Friday, 12 October 2018

Brexit ~ some thoughts on an autumn morning

Autumn leaves are with us and so is the mess that has become of Brexit.  In fact, it is a major understatement to describe the situation as a mess.  Where are we now?  A few thoughts ....

Leaving date:

As things stand, the UK leaves the EU on 29 March 2019 - only 168 days away at the time of writing.

Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union is the mechanism by which a Member State of the EU leaves the club.

Thursday, 11 October 2018

The fracking protesters ~ sentence ~ was there bias?

The  common law has developed various principles underpinning the integrity of legal process.  An example is the avoidance by decision-makers of bias.  A judge, trying a case, cannot have any direct personal or financial interest in the outcome but the law goes further and seeks to prevent even an appearance of bias.

One of the most famous judicial statements throughout legal history was that of Lord Hewart CJ in Ex p McCarthy [1924] 1 KB 256 - ". . . it is not merely of some importance but is of fundamental importance that justice should not only be done, but should manifestly and undoubtedly be seen to be done."

Friday, 5 October 2018

Investigatory Powers Tribunal ~ Covert agents and crime

The Pat Finucane Centre has highlighted a case which is before the Investigatory Powers Tribunal (IPT) - Pat Finucane Centre 4 October.

The case has been brought by Privacy International which claims that covert agents recruited by the Security Service are being authorised to carry out crimes within the UK under a policy which has no legal basis.  It is said in the Claimant's skeleton argument that - "No meaningful limits have been disclosed" and "it appears that the Security Service thinks it could, if it thinks it would be in the public interest authorise participation in murder, torture, sexual assault or other grave criminality in the UK.  Neither the victim of the crime, the Police or the Crown Prosecution Service are notified of authorisations.  In practice, this will mean that criminal conduct will not be investigated or prosecuted."  It is also claimed that oversight carried out by the Investigatory Powers Commissioner is "so narrow as to be ineffective."

Thursday, 4 October 2018

Brexit-related litigation

This post is a "catch up" on a number of "Brexit-related" applications for judicial review. 

Judicial review:

Judicial review may be described as a legal process by which the senior courts review the lawfulness of official decision-making.  The courts are able to consider whether a public body has acted in accordance with its legal obligations and within its legal powers.  Where legal error is found, the court is able to grant appropriate relief.  Judicial review is not a process to allow judges to replace duly appointed decision-makers such as Ministers, Local authorities, NHS Trusts, Chief Constables and so on.  The court does not entertain mere busybodies since applicants have to show "sufficient interest" to bring judicial review but there is a public interest in ensuring that the rule of law is maintained.

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

A legal first at the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court hearing on 3 and 4 October 2018 - In the matter of D (A Child) - is of particular interest because it is the first time the court has sat with a majority of female justices.  The court is Lady Hale, Lord Carnwath, Lady Black, Lord Lloyd-Jones, Lady Arden.

Lady Arden was sworn in as a Justice of the Supreme Court on Monday 1st October and the ceremony may be viewed here.   Lord Kitchin was also sworn as a justice at the same ceremony.  Biographies of the 12 justices - 9 male and 3 female - may be read here.

Lady Hale of Richmond - now President of the Supreme Court - was the only female to be appointed to the Supreme Court's predecessor, the Appellate Committee of the House of Lords.

Legal Cheek 17 September 2018

Saturday, 29 September 2018

Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act 2018

The Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act 2018 (the 2018 Act) received Royal Assent on 13 September 2018.  It is an Act to make provision about offences when perpetrated against emergency workers, and persons assisting such workers; to make certain offences aggravated when perpetrated against such workers in the exercise of their duty; and for connected purposes.

The background is growing concern that emergency workers are also victims of offences.  For example -

This Act extends to England and Wales only and comes into force at the end of the period of two months beginning with the day on which it is passed.

Footballers, flashy cars and motoring offences

Footballers, flashy cars and motoring offences have been in the news recently.

It was reported that  Southampton player Mario Lemina admitted three counts of failing to identify himself in March and May -BBC News 4 September.  Aldershot Magistrates Court dropped the speeding charges, but gave Lemina 18 points on his non-UK driving licence, taking his points tally to 39.   Lemina, 25, of Ashley Heath, Dorset, was fined £660 for each of the three offences, in addition to a victim surcharge.  His Mercedes was caught on speed camera three times breaking the limit.

Thursday, 27 September 2018

Birmingham 1974 bombings - "Perpetrator issue" excluded from new inquests

 Bombs detonated on 21 November 1974 in Birmingham and wrecked the Mulberry Bush and the Tavern in the Town.  21 people were killed and 182 injured.  A third explosive device failed to detonate.  Six men - (Hugh Callaghan, Patrick Joseph Hill, Gerard Hunter, Richard McIlkenny, William Power and John Walker) - were arrested and subsequently tried in the Shire Hall of Lancaster Castle before Bridge J and a jury.  The trial commenced on 9 June 1975 and the men, having been convicted, were sentenced on 15 August 1975.  Their convictions were quashed by the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) on 14 March 1991 - R v McIlkenny, Hill, Power, Walker, Hunter and Callaghan [1991] EWCA Crim 2 - Lloyd, Mustill and Farquharson LJJ.

'Tommy Robinson' case adjourned for written submissions

Mr Stephen Yaxley-Lennon (aka Tommy Robinson)'s contempt case was the subject of  posts 1 June 2018,  5 July and 1 August.

The Court of Appeal - Full Judgment (Bailii) or Full Judgment (pdf)

The appeal in respect of the committal for contempt at Leeds Crown Court was allowed.  Mr Robinson was granted bail and the matter of contempt at Leeds Crown Court was remitted to be heard by the Recorder of London at the Old Bailey.

'Fracking' protesters jailed ~ Public Nuisance ~ excessive sentences

The Independent 26 September reports that three anti-fracking activists have been jailed for halting a convoy of lorries in a four-day protest outside a shale drilling site.  Simon Roscoe Blevins, Richard Roberts, and Rich Loizou, are thought to be the first environmental demonstrators to receive custodial sentences in the UK since 1932.  Blevins and Roberts were each imprisoned for 16 months and Loizou was jailed for 15 months at Preston Crown Court on Wednesday.  Further reports at The Guardian 26 September , Channel 4 News (video) and The Canary.

As is so often the situation, sentencing remarks have not (yet) been published by the Judiciary and so our views are informed by media reports.

The men were sentenced

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Did this offender "get away with it"

The Essex Police Federation reports - "Man ordered to pay just £50 after spitting blood in officer's face" - Daily Express 26 September.  An Essex Police Officer who had blood spat in his face during a ‘disgusting’ assault as he made an arrest has hit out at the leniency the courts showed to his attacker.   PC Rhys Linge says his assailant, who was ordered to pay him £50 in compensation, will ‘feel like he’s got away with it’ and that he and his colleagues are feeling increasingly let down by the courts."

The officer

Monday, 24 September 2018

Civil aviation and a "no deal" Brexit

If you book a flight planned to depart after 29 March 2019 then do not be surprised to find a clause in the contract such as "subject to the regulatory environment allowing” the flight to take place.  On how air operators may seek to limit their liability see The Guardian 4 October 2018.

There have been warnings for a considerable time that Brexit could result in international flights being unable to operate - please see post 19 July 2018 - Brexit and Civil Aviation .  In that post I noted the UK government position regarding civil aviation as set out in the White Paper - The future relationship between the UK and the EU - and also included an overview of the existing Civil Aviation Regulatory system.

Friday, 21 September 2018

Court of Session - to ask CJEU if Article 50 notification may be unilaterally withdrawn

Updated 10 October

Scotland's Court of Session (Inner House) has ruled that it can make a reference to the Court of Justice of the European Union on the question of whether notification under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) may be unilaterally withdrawn by the State which gave the notice.  Government arguments to the contrary were dismissed.

Any Wightman MSP v Secretary of State for Exiting the EU [2018] CSIH 62

The petitioners,

Salzburg - 19 and 20 September 2018

Dinner at Felsenreitschule
With just under 190 days to go until Brexit Day - 11 pm on 29 March 2019 - the Prime Minister attended an Informal meeting of Heads of State or Government in Salzburg, Austria.  The meeting, held mainly on 20 September, discussed Internal Security, Migration and, in EU27 format, Brexit.

Leaders concentrated their discussions on three aspects of Brexit: the need to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland, the future relationship and the organisation of the final phase of Brexit talks.

The outcome of the meeting can only be described as embarrassing for the Prime Minister personally.  The heart was ripped out of the Chequers Proposal.  Much more crucially, the likelihood of a "No Deal" Brexit increased with immensely serious consequences for the UK both economically and politically.

The end of conference statement by the European Council President (Mr Donald Tusk) may be read HERE.   Mr Tusk stated:

Monday, 17 September 2018

Friday, 14 September 2018

Big Brother Watch v United Kingdom

On 13 September 2018, the European Court of Human Rights handed down judgment in Big Brother Watch and Others v. the United Kingdom.* 

The court deal with complaints by journalists and rights organisations about three different surveillance regimes: (1) the bulk interception of communications; (2) intelligence sharing with foreign governments; and (3) the obtaining of communications data from communications service providers.

Thursday, 13 September 2018

Ireland v UK ~ 1978 judgment will not be revised

The years 1968 to 1998 were a terrible time in Northern Ireland.  They were the years of "The Troubles" when over 3,600 people were killed and thousands more injured.   Over the course of three decades, violence on the streets of Northern Ireland was commonplace and spilled over into Great Britain, the Republic of Ireland and as far afield as Gibraltar.  Several attempts to find a political solution failed until the Good Friday Agreement of 1998.  The Northern Ireland Act 1998 implemented that agreement and devolved government was restored.  Regrettably, in early 2017, devolved government broke down and the British government is seeking to restore it - UK Government Statement 6 September 2018.

A number of issues

Tuesday, 11 September 2018

Speech by the Lord Chief Justice in Brisbane, Australia

The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Burnett, has addressed the "Commonwealth Judges and Magistrates Association" annual conference in Brisbane, Australia.  The speech was entitled "Becoming stronger together."

Lord Burnett was principally concerned with judicial independence and his speech draws strongly on a speech in 2016 by Lord Hodge - Upholding the rule of law: how we preserve judicial independence in the United Kingdom (pdf).

Lord Burnett touches upon

Friday, 7 September 2018


Leaving the EU on 29 March 2019 without a Withdrawal Agreement in place cannot be ruled out even though negotiations are on-going - read the Secretary of State's Statement of 4 September.   Also see the Secretary of State's speech (23 August) regarding No Deal Planning.

A considerable amount of material is in the public domain to show what the impact of that scenario is likely to be:

Wednesday, 5 September 2018


The famous former footballer Mr David Beckham has entered a not guilty plea to a charge of speeding on the A40 - ITV News - Sky News - BBC News - Manchester Evening News.  It is reported that he was driving at 59 mph in a 40 limit and that Mr Beckham is not denying the speed.  How then can he plead not guilty?

The answer lies in the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988 section 1 which requires a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) to be "served" within 14 days of the offence.*  The wording of section 1(1) makes it clear that there cannot be a conviction unless the requirement of service is complied with.

Tuesday, 4 September 2018

Human rights ~ the convention is 65 years old

3 September was the 65th anniversary of the coming into force, in 1953, of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, better known as the European Convention on Human Rights. 

    Ahead of the anniversary, Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland said:

    Monday, 3 September 2018

    Justice Committee - Transforming Rehabilitation

    In 2014 and 2015 the Government introduced major structural reforms to the probation system, which included changes to who delivered probation services and what was delivered as part of probation. These reforms were known as Transforming Rehabilitation (TR). The TR reforms sought to:

    Public inquiries: are they of value?

    Public inquiries play a prominent part in public life in the United Kingdom. When major accidents or disasters occur, or when something goes seriously wrong within government or a public body, calls are often made for “a public inquiry” to be held. Inquiries into matters of public concern can be used to establish facts, to learn lessons so that mistakes are not repeated, to restore public confidence and to determine accountability.  Nevertheless, they can be lengthy; spend much time on matters of a procedural nature; very expensive; and, when they eventually report, their recommendations are not always implemented by Ministers.  Concerns continue about the amount of control which Ministers are empowered to use in relation to inquires which they create.

    The value of inquiries:

    At least, that is the theory but the value of inquiries has been questioned.  They can be lengthy and expensive - the Saville Inquiry into the events of "Bloody Sunday" (January 1972) was established in 1998, heard evidence until November 2004 and published a report on 15 June 2010.  The costs were around £200m. 

    Saturday, 1 September 2018

    HMP Birmingham - Urgent Notification Letter.

    This earlier post 3 August noted a number of serious concerns regarding prisons in England and Wales.  A high prison population managed by fewer prison officers; considerable use of short term imprisonment (6 months or less); and problems with privatised Community Rehabilitation Companies (CRC).   The pressing need for reform was set out on 6 March by the Secretary of State for Justice -speech on 6 March 2018.  

    Concerns in some prisons run at an even deeper level as evidenced by an Urgent Notification Letter regarding HMP Birmingham sent on 16 August by HM Chief Inspector of Prisons (Mr Peter Clarke) to the Secretary of State.

    Jogee - 30 months after the Supreme Court judgment

    For over 30 years the criminal law equated 'foresight' on the part of a co-accused with 'intent to assist' the principal offender.  In R v Jogee [2016] UKSC 8, the Supreme Court court unanimously held that the correct approach was to treat that foresight as ‘evidence of intent’ together with the rest of the evidence - Previous post 18 February 2016 and Barrister Magazine 20 April 2016.

    Almost 500 people are thought to have been convicted of murder between 2005 and 2013 as secondary parties in joint-enterprise cases, many in gang-related attacks.

    Monday, 27 August 2018

    A No Deal Brexit ~ Government Preparations for no deal ~ The WTO

    What will happen after 29 March 2019 if there is no Withdrawal Agreement between the UK and the EU?  In this "no deal" or "cliff edge" scenario, the UK would step entirely away from the EU ("third country status") and there would not be an implementation / transition period to protect British business / commerce from the inevitable ravages of such a status.  How should businesses and individuals prepare for this situation?

    On 23 August, the UK government published Preparations for a No Deal Brexit.  The speech of the Secretary of State for Exiting the EU is HERE.   Just how confident one should be that a deal will be achieved is highly debatable even though the Minister referred to a No Deal Brexit as an "unlikely event" and said that he was confident that a "good deal is within our sights."

    Sunday, 26 August 2018

    Inside the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division)

    On 21 August, the Judiciary published the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) Annual Report 2016-17.  In the Preface to the report, the Lord Chief Justice notes that the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) is "there to ensure that so far as humanly possible convictions which are unsafe are set aside, and sentences which are either manifestly excessive or unduly lenient are corrected.  Convictions which are safe and sentences which are appropriate must be upheld. That simple summary of the objective of the Court reveals its importance, and the high level of responsibility which all who work in the Court, whether in the office or in the Court itself, must carry."

    "Inside the Court of Appeal" was a documentary

    Thursday, 16 August 2018

    Judicial diversity

    Former Magistrates' Court - Kendal
    The Judiciary has published Judicial Diversity Statistics 2018 setting out the position as at 1 April 2018.

    The data for Magistrates is particularly striking.

    Tuesday, 14 August 2018

    The tragic death of Jack Adcock

    Jack Adcock
    Jack Adcock was born on 15 July 2004.  He died at Leicester Royal Infirmary on 18 February 2011.  The clinical cause of his death was sepsis - a condition explained by the NHS and also see Sepsis Trust.  According to the Trust five people die every hour due to sepsis - "Sepsis can initially look like flu, gastroenteritis or a chest infection. There is no one sign, and symptoms present differently between adults and children."

    The BBC Panorama coverage of this case is an excellent, detailed and very moving programme. 

    Monday, 13 August 2018

    Controversy over the burqa

    Conservative MP and former Foreign Secretary - the Rt. Hon. Boris Johnson MP - caused considerable furore over a piece he wrote for The Telegraph on 5 August - Denmark has got it wrong. Yes, the burka is oppressive and ridiculous - but that's still no reason to ban it.   Mr Johnson expressed surprise that Denmark had joined several other European countries - e.g. France, Belgium - "in imposing a ban on the niqab and the burka – those items of Muslim head-gear that obscure the female face."  He continued to say that he agreed with those who think that the burka is oppressive - "I would go further and say that it is absolutely ridiculous that people should choose to go around looking like letter boxes; ...."

    Thursday, 9 August 2018

    Independence of the Parole Board

    Mr Justice Mostyn
    In 2009, Mr Wakenshaw received an indeterminate sentence of imprisonment for public protection and has now served the minimum term stipulated within his sentence.   His continued detention is periodically reviewed by the Parole Board to determine his suitability for release.

    In judicial review proceedings, Mr Wakenshaw claimed that the Parole Board lacked the requisite independence under the common law and article 5(4) of the European Convention on Human Rights.  He did not wish to prevent his current review going ahead but, more fundamentally, he claimed a declaration that the Parole Board was not an objectively fair adjudicative body.

    Wednesday, 8 August 2018

    Pressing issues - (3) - Legal aid

    The post World War 2 welfare state comprised the NHS; universal housing; state security (benefits); and universal education.  According to the late Sir Henry Brooke (HERE), Legal Aid was not a pillar of the welfare state even though law underpins crucial matters such as the NHS structure, rights to medical treatment, housing, welfare, education and the general rights of those charged with criminal offences.  Under the Legal Aid and Advice Act 1949 legal aid was to be available in all courts and tribunals where lawyers normally appeared for private clients.  Eligibility should be extended to those of “small or moderate means”, and above a free limit there should be a sliding scale of contributions.

    The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 - (LASPO) - brought about major reform of legal aid.

    Monday, 6 August 2018

    Pressing issues - (2) - Disclosure

    In 2017, Liam Allan, a criminology student at Greenwich University, was charged with six counts of rape and six of sexual assault.  During the trial, the contents came to light of mobile telephone messages sent by the complainant including messages asking Mr Allan for sex.  This material had been held electronically by the Police even though Mr Allan had maintained all along that the sex was consensual.  The outcome was that prosecuting counsel (Mr Jerry Hayes) offered no evidence against Mr Allan and the case against him ended.

    The investigative role of the Police gives them almost a monopoly over the collection of information.  Several lines of enquiry might have been followed and a considerable volume of information obtained but the prosecution may not need to use all of it in a particular case.   There is often so-called "UNUSED" material and it is possible that there is unused material which is capable of of undermining the case for the prosecution against the accused, or of assisting the case for the accused.

    Friday, 3 August 2018

    Pressing issues - (1) - Prisons and Probation

    The prison population in England and Wales stood at 83,107 on 3 August 2018 against a "useable operational capacity" of 86,012 - MoJ Prison Population figures.  The terms used in the statistics are defined as:

    Wednesday, 1 August 2018

    Mr Yaxley-Lennon (aka Tommy Robinson) ~ Court of Appeal orders re-hearing

    On 18 July, an appeal was heard in the contempt of court case of Stephen Yaxley-Lennon (aka Tommy Robinson).  On 1 August, the court - Lord Chief Justice (Lord Burnett), Turner and McGowan JJ - handed down judgment.

    According to the Law Commission (2012), "Contempt of court" covers a wide variety of conduct which undermines or has the potential to undermine the course of justice, ..."

    The events:

    Tuesday, 31 July 2018

    Supreme Court ~ Enhanced Criminal Record Certificates

    On 30 July, the Supreme Court handed down judgment in R(AR) v Chief Constable of Greater Manchester [2018] UKSC 47
    The Court of Appeal judgment - [2016] EWCA Civ 490.

    A reporting restriction applies so that no one shall publish or reveal the name or address of the appellant - referred to as AR - or publish or reveal any information which would be likely to lead to the identification of the appellant or of any member of his family.

    Monday, 30 July 2018

    Supreme Court ~ A NHS Trust v Y [2018] UKSC 46

    On 30 July 2018, the Supreme Court handed down judgment in A NHS Trust v Y (by his litigation friend, the Official Solicitor)  [2018] UKSC 46.
    Reporting restrictions apply to this case to protect the identity of the NHS Trust involved, the identity of Y and of others involved in the case.  Full details of the restrictions are set out in the Press Summary.

    Sunday, 29 July 2018

    One for the Wet Towels ~ Scotland's Legal Continuity Bill

    "It's one for the wet towels," said Lady Hale at the conclusion of the oral hearings in the Reference by the Attorney-General and Advocate General for Scotland on the UK Withdrawal from the European Union (Legal Continuity)(Scotland) Bill.

    Here is a case for lovers of byzantine legal complexity to savour.

    Fundamentally, the Scottish Parliament was created by the Scotland Act 1998 and it only has the powers granted to it by the Scotland Act 1998 as amended.  If it is claimed that Scottish legislation is outside the powers of the Scottish Parliament then reference can be made to the Supreme Court of the UK to determine whether the legislation is within devolved legislative powers.

    Notes on the Withdrawal Agreement White Paper (24 July)

    Pro-EU Rally, London, June 2018
    White Paper:

    On 24 July, the government published a White Paper - Legislating for the Withdrawal Agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union

    The paper sets out the government's current thinking for a European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill to be introduced in the autumn IF there is a Withdrawal Agreement which Parliament has accepted.  The similarly named European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 section 13 specifies the requirements for Parliamentary acceptance of any withdrawal agreement and framework for the future relationship.

    Thursday, 26 July 2018

    247 Days to Brexit ~ Talk of treason !

    Clive Dunn as L.Cpl Jones
    Updated27 July - see the addendum for Statements of 26 July by Michel Barnier and Dominic Raab.

    USA and EU trade:

    During his recent visit to the UK, Donald J Trump first claimed that any attempt to keep close ties with the European Union would make a future trade deal with the US unlikely - The Independent 13 July.  Two days later it was reported that the President had insisted the US and UK are “going to end up making a deal” on trade - The Independent 15 July.  All of that is less than two weeks ago and now we see the US President meeting with the President of the European Commission and agreeing to work towards lowering trade barriers with the European Union.  As reported by the BBC 25 July, the two sides would work for zero tariffs, zero non-tariff barriers, and zero subsidies on non-auto goods.  They also agreed to increase trade in services and agriculture, including greater US soy bean exports to the EU.

    Tuesday, 24 July 2018

    Brexit - White Paper on legislation for the Withdrawal Agreement

    Further White Paper:

    A further Brexit-related White Paper was issued on 24 July 2018 - Legislating for the Withdrawal Agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union.

    The White Paper confirms that the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill will:
    • be the primary means by which the rights of EU citizens will be protected in UK law;
    • legislate for the time-limited implementation period; and
    • create a financial authority to manage the specific payments to be made under the financial settlement, with appropriate Parliamentary oversight
    See Hansard Online - Statement to House of Commons 24 July.

    Foreign Fighters and the Death Penalty ~ Government policy criticised

    On Monday 23 July, an Urgent Question was asked in the House of Commons about "Foreign Fighters and the Death Penalty" - Hansard Online.  It had come to light that the UK government had agreed to provide information to the USA relating to Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee El-Sheikh who were captured in Syria in January 2018.  The men are said to be part of a Jihadi group - referred to as "the Beatles" - and known for its brutality to captives including murder by beheading.  The group included Mohammed Emwazi who was killed by a drone attack in 2015.

    Friday, 20 July 2018

    Brexit negotiations - Preparing for No Deal - Reaction to White Paper

    19 July:

    The EU Commission, in a Press Release 19 July,  has adopted a Communication outlining the ongoing work on the preparation for all outcomes of the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union.  The Press Release states -

    On 30 March 2019, the United Kingdom will leave the EU and become a third country. This will have repercussions for citizens, businesses and administrations in both the United Kingdom and the EU. These repercussions range from new controls at the EU's outer border with the UK, to the validity of UK-issued licences, certificates and authorisations and to different rules for data transfers.

    Today's text calls on Member States and private parties to step up preparations and follows a request by the European Council (Article 50) last month to intensify preparedness at all levels and for all outcomes.

    Preparing for the Withdrawal of the UK from the EU

    The Commission has also issued Brexit Preparedness Notices addressing numerous sectors.

    20 July:

    Thursday, 19 July 2018

    Brexit and Civil Aviation ~ Irish Taoiseach issues warning

    The civil aviation sector is a vital part of the UK economy, contributing £52bn to UK GDP in 2016 and supporting close to a million jobs. Flights to or from Europe accounted for 63% of all passengers who passed through UK airports in 2016.

    Mr Leo Varadkar is the Taoiseach of Ireland.  Speaking after a cabinet meeting in Derrynane House, Co Kerry, Leo Varadkar claimed Ireland’s airspace may be out of bounds for UK jets if they go down the route of a hard Brexit and ban the EU from fishing in their waters - News Letter 18 July.  This statement was condemned as "shameful blackmail" by Mr David Bannerman MEP  (Conservative) but perhaps we should not be too quick to condemn.

    We have been here before - Law and Lawyers January 2018 - What if no deal? EU Commission Notice - Air Transport and see the Air Transport Notice 11th December 2017.  The only sensible conclusion is that "no deal Brexit" poses a massive threat to civil aviation as made clear by the British Airline Pilots Association in October 2017.

    See also  Brexit Preparedness Notices addressing numerous sectors including Air Transport and Aviation Safety.

    See also Aviation Law Review September 2017 and Getting the Deal Through - Air Transport EU - October 2017

    UK Government proposals:

    Wednesday, 18 July 2018

    Two further Brexit-related Bills - Customs/Taxation - Trade

    This post looks at two important Brexit-related Bills: the Taxation (Cross-Border) Trade Bill 2017-19 and the Trade Bill 2017-19.

    Taxation (Cross-Border) Trade Bill:

    Sometimes referred to as "the Customs Bill", the government's Taxation (Cross-Border) Trade Bill 2017-19 allows the creation of a functioning and independent customs, VAT and excise regime after Brexit.  It is a Bill to -