An application for permission to Judicially Review a Sussex police decision, made by Rose Horan, has been submitted. The claim has now been sealed by the High Court and the legal papers have been properly served on the Chief Constable of Sussex police, Jo Shiner, via their solicitor, Belinda Moore of Weightmans Solicitors.
Belinda Moore is accused of intentionally failing to comply with the pre-action protocol for Judicial Review by completely ignoring correspondence. It is believed this was in hope that the victim was bluffing.
Sussex police instructed Weightman’s Solicitors to respond to the Letter of Claim in which Sussex police tried to blame the victim, saying the victim failed to exhaust the police complaints process before seeking a Judicial Review.
The rules and processes to seek a review of a police decision are simple:
Firstly, the police complaints process cannot be used to seek a review of a police decision, this would be deemed as an abuse of the complaints procedure and is clearly published on the IOPC website.
(taken from the IOPC website Focus issue 2)
Abuse of procedure
The abuse ground is a far-reaching one covering a number of different scenarios where it can be demonstrated that the police complaints system is being misused or manipulated to influence another process or outcome. It should be used where it can be demonstrated that the complaint should not continue because the complaints system was not designed to cater for such a matter.
A VRR is only available if a suspect is interviewed under caution, or if the CPS make a non-charging decision. This information is even on the Sussex police website.
Neither was the case. Sussex police were acting deceitfully by advising the victim to seek a review of their decision via a police complaint.
A Judicial Review is therefore the only mechanism available to seek a formal review of their decision.
It is strongly believed that Sussex police and Weightman Solicitors knowingly made false representations to the victim in an attempt to bully him into not making the application for JR.
The victim acted properly and professionally and notified Sussex police of their legally flawed response.
Sussex police, via Weightmans Solicitors, seemingly conceded to the remedies sought within the LBC, and the victim was assured that the police would review their decision. This promise was sent to the victim by Belinda Moore, a Partner of Weightman Solicitors.
Thank you for your email .
A letter has been sent to you from Sussex police professional standards stating that both your complaint and the criminal investigation will be reviewed and reconsidered.
The letter to you was dated 24 August . I don’t know whether the intention was to post it or send via email.
It was suspicious that this communication was, in essence, consenting to the remedies sought in the LBC, which raises the question, “why wasn’t the letter sent from the Solicitors, or even via the Solicitors”? Furthermore, the letter was being sent via the postal service during a time when there were several postal strikes, also, the letter was being sent after the deadline of the LBC.
The victim requested a copy of the letter by email, which Belinda Moore provided. This shows that Belinda Moore had the letter and therefore would have been aware of what the letter contained. The letter had no legal standing and was flawed for the purposes of the LBC.
The letter, which was sent by Detective Inspector Mark Cullimore of Sussex Police Professional Standards, was legally flawed.
Detective Inspector Mark Cullimore used the wrong name for the suspect under investigation and his letter does not (as promised by Belinda Moore) agree to review the decision, the letter from Detective Inspector Mark Cullimore says
I shall also be asking for a review of your criminal allegations to be carried out by a Detective Inspector who has no prior knowledge of the case and has not worked with the officers involved.
Although it would appear at first sight that the criminal offence will be reviewed (as promised by Solicitor, Belinda Moore), the letter only promises to ask for a review.
It is believed that this letter was intentionally drafted this way as surely a Detective Inspector of PSD cannot be so incompetent.
In an attempt to clarify the promise and avoid a Judicial Review, several emails were sent to Belinda Moore and DI Mark Cullimore asking to;
- Correct the suspect’s name, and
- Make an undertaking that a review would be completed.
The requests were ignored.
So, the victim was forced to spend considerable time and effort to make his application for Judicial Review where at all material times Sussex police were notified of costs.
Within a few days of serving the evidence on Belinda Moore and Sussex police PSD, the victim has been contacted by no less than three separate police officers from Sussex police and it would appear that the failings are now being addressed.
The officers now contacting the victim are a credit to the police. They do not appear to have had any involvement in the previous investigations and appear to be shocked by the failures of Sussex police.
As the Judicial Review process is underway, a formal police response is still expected and unless the remedies are agreed by Mutual Consent, then the Judicial Review process will continue.