Caven blog

Tara Doyle

Is ‘slopping out’ in UK prisons an abuse of human rights?

The Telegraph reported yesterday on the considerations of a High court judge when deciding whether to allow an appeal by a convicted felon, regarding the practice of ‘slopping out’, which lingers in some older UK prisons after being largely phased out in the 1990s.

In the original claim last year, two former inmates argued that slopping out, or using a bucket for toilet purposes when locked in a cell and the later emptying of the bucket at a sluice, contravened their human rights under Articles 3 and 8 of the European Convention (ECHR).


New law bans wheel-clamping on private land

From Monday this week, as reported by the Independent, it is an offence under the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 for wheel-clampers, either a land-owner or persons employed by a land-owner, to clamp, tow, or block-in vehicles on private land in England and Wales.

Previous to this date, individuals or firms employed to use immobilisation devices on cars against a release fee were licensed by the Security Industries Authority, under the Private Security Industry Act 2001.


Teacher in jail in France after disappearing with underage schoolgirl

A married 30-year-old maths teacher from the Bishop Bell Church of England School in Eastbourne has been arrested on suspicion of child abduction in the town of Bordeaux in south-west France.

Jeremy Forrest, from Lewes, East Sussex, has been remanded in custody at the high-security Gradignan prison to await extradition.


Furniture shop appears to exploit loophole in licensing regulations

A shop purporting to sell furniture in Farnham in Surrey, called Innsatiable, has opened a free bar on its premises, saying that giving away free alcoholic drinks attracts more customers.

BBC News reports that the shop does not have an alcohol license, so selling alcohol would be illegal. However, staff members suggest that customers might wish to purchase a beer-mat, priced at £2.75, or items of furniture that are grouped around tables for drinkers to test, in order to ‘support’ the business.


Nursery owner attempted to cover up reason for 3-year-old’s head injury

A multicultural nursery has been fined £16,000 and ordered to pay costs of £7,500 by recorder Malcolm Morse at Birmingham Crown Court yesterday. The court found that the owner, Irshan Ahmed, tried to cover up the reason why a three-year-old boy fell from a first-floor fire-escape staircase and suffered a head injury.

The small boy, Eshan Ahmed, who lives in Aston, fell head-first from the outside staircase onto the concrete below in March last year, after running from staff at Little Hippos Nursery and Day Care Centre in Summer Lane, Birmingham.


Should the law be changed to routinely arm British police officers?

The debate about whether police officers in the UK should be routinely armed has been re-visited, after the shocking deaths of two unarmed policewomen in Manchester on Tuesday.

The two officers, 23-year-old PC Nicola Hughes, and 32-year-old PC Fiona Bone, were killed in an incident in the Tameside district of the city, after being sent to check out a routine house burglary report.


Eight-year sentence for woman who aborted her own baby at 39 weeks

A 35-year-old mother of two from North Yorkshire, Sarah Catt, was sentenced yesterday at Leeds Crown Court, after pleading guilty in July to a charge of administering a poison with intent to procure a miscarriage.

Catt, who was married, had been having a seven-year affair with a work colleague. According to BBC News, she believed he was the father of the child. She concealed the pregnancy from her husband, but went to a hospital in Leeds for a scan at 30 weeks.


What will the criminalisation of squatting cost?

The activity of squatting, or taking possession of an unoccupied building and living there without paying anything to the property owner, has long been a topic that divides opinion.

Some see it as a positive action, where the homeless make good use of unused living spaces. Others see it as a parasitic act that is akin to stealing.


Is sex without consent always rape?

The topic of consent in relation to rape has been a hot topic recently, as reported by the BBC among other media outlets.

Firstly, there were controversial remarks last week by Respect MP George Galloway, which included sarcastic musings on whether men should ask permission before ‘every penetration’.


Legal Ombudsman to handle complaints about PPI Claims Management Companies

The Government announced yesterday that the Legal Ombudsman, set up in 2010 to resolve complaints about lawyers, will be able to investigate grievances from the public about how claims management companies (CMCs) have dealt with mis-sold Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) on their behalf.

According to the Ministry of Justice, there have been many more complaints against companies handling PPI claims compared to other types of claims companies, such as those dealing with personal injury and unfair bank charges claims.


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