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Hillsborough Inquest Case Analysis Essay

As explained in Halsbury’s law of England “An inquest has been held to be a fact-finding inquiry conducted by a coroner, with or without a jury, to establish reliable answers to four important but limited factual questions. (1) The identity of the deceased; (2) the place of death; (3) the time of death; and (4) how the deceased came by his death”. With the Hillsborough inquest being the focus of this essay, the first half of the essay will examine the legal procedures that were available to challenge the original verdict of the Hillsborough inquest. Under the domestic legislation of the Coroners Act 1988 and the legal routes proposed and implemented under the Coroners and Justices Act 2009 (CJA 2009). The second half of the discussion will…

The English administrative court is very unlikely to interfere with a coroner’s decision unless it can be challenged on these grounds: illegality, irrationality and proportionality, and procedural impropriety. On the 6th of April 1993 the high court granted leave to six families of the Hillsborough disaster to apply for a judicial review. The grounds of their appeal include: insufficiency of inquiry, the irregularity of proceedings and the emergence of new facts or evidence. LJ McCowan rejected the submission on the 5th of November, ruling that the inquests had been properly conducted and there had been no suppression of evidence . Therefore ruling that it “was not a case on which it would be right to order fresh inquests. In addition, even though there has been cases such as R v North London coroners and R v Avon coroners , whereby the court found that the coroner had misdirected the jury, the court refused to quash the original verdicts and order fresh inquests, as the court saw no benefits in doing so. This indicates how high the threshold for a judicial review…

There have been a number of important developments in case law, underlined by the implementation of Human Rights Act, incorporating the European Convention on Human Rights”. Article 2 of the ECHR protects the right to life; “everyones right to life shall be protected by law. No one shall be deprived of his life intentionally save in the execution of a sentence of a court following his conviction of a crime for which this penalty is provided by law”. The quintessential case brought to the Strasbourg’s court regarding the breach of Article 2 by the United Kingdom was in the case of McCann V United Kingdom in 1995 and it was successful. Obligation under article 2 can be interpreted to the obligations of coroners in cases where the state is allegedly only indirectly responsible for the death, as in this case, by failing to prevent it. Going back to December 2012, when the verdict of the original Hillsborough inquest was quashed, in the words of the Lord Judge: “The coroner will have to decide the format of the inquest and whether Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights is engaged in this inquest, and, if so, the form that it should take to address these issue” . Thus, it seems that the High court had no doubt as to whether the new inquest would be compliant with Article 2. McIntosh discussed in one of his journals that: ‘Where…

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