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Forum Rules Inquest Transcripts

| Inquest transcripts reproduced courtesy of: http://www.independent.gov.uk/7julyinquests/ | PDF transcripts are here: http://julyseventh.co.uk/j7-inquest-transcripts/ |

Pages: (4) 1 2 [3] 4  ( Go to first unread post )

 FOIs: Information released during the Inquests
Bridget
Posted: Nov 7 2011, 06:20 PM





Group: J7 Admins
Posts: 15,276
Member No.: 2
Joined: 26-November 05



^
QUOTE
Dear  Mr Dunne,

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2011090002950

Further to our letter of 12 October 2011, I have unfortunately been unable to meet the response time originally provided to you in relation to:

    Original FOI case number 2011060003689


I hope to complete your review no later than 2 December 2011. Should there be any unforeseen delay, I will contact you and update you as soon as possible.

I apologise for the delay, and thank you for your patience.

Should you have any further inquiries concerning this matter, please contact Sarah Strong on telephone number 020 7161 3604 or at the address at the top of the letter quoting the reference number above.

Thank you for your interest in the MPS.

Yours sincerely

Sarah Strong
FOIA Policy Research & Complaints Officer
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Bridget
Posted: Nov 8 2011, 06:25 PM





Group: J7 Admins
Posts: 15,276
Member No.: 2
Joined: 26-November 05



QUOTE
Dear J7
Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2011090002962

Further to our letter dated 12th October 2011, I have unfortunately been unable to meet the response time provided to you in relation to:

    Original FOI case number 2011060004264


I hope to complete your review no later than 18th November 2011.  Should there be any unforseen delay, I will contact you and update you as soon as possible.

I apologise for the delay , and thank you for your patience.

Should you have any further inquiries concerning this matter, please contact Mike Lyng on telephone number 0207 161 3605 or at the address at the top of the letter quoting the reference number above.

Yours sincerely

Mike Lyng
Quality and Assurance Advisor
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Bridget
Posted: Nov 11 2011, 04:22 PM





Group: J7 Admins
Posts: 15,276
Member No.: 2
Joined: 26-November 05



Information Commissioner?
QUOTE
FOIA Complaints Decision

From:    mike.lyng@met.police.uk [Add]
To:    julyseventh@fastmail.net
Date:    Fri, 11 Nov 2011 2:56 PM

Dear J7

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 20110900029624

Further to our letter of 12th October 2011, I am now able to provide a full response to your complaint dated 11th September 2011 concerning FoIA complaint pertaining to closed case 2011060004264. 

Original request (28th July 2011)

J7: the July 7th Truth Campaign request a copy of the full Theseus report - July 7 Inquest ref: INQ11410 - attributed to DCS Douglas McKenna on 3/03/2011:

http://www.julyseventh.co.uk/j7-inquest-tr..._am-session.pdf


Request for review (11th September 2011)

I wish to complain at the refusal to release the report as requested in this FOI. The secretary to the 7/7 Inquests informed J7 that:  Dear Sirs, There are no plans to release any other documents as it is only those documents or parts of the documents that have been adduced in court that form the evidence in these proceedings.  However, once the Coroner's records have been transferred to a place of deposit, following the conclusion of the inquests, they become subject to the Freedom of Information Act, 2005.  Some information will be transferred to the National Archives within a few months but records provided to us for the purposes of disclosure by other organisations will be retained by them and Freedom of Information requests can be made directly to the organisation concerned.   

DECISION

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) has completed its review and has decided to uphold the original decision to engage section 32(1) Court Records and specify the subsection as being Section 32(1) (a).

In accordance with The Code of Practice (Freedom Of Information Act 2000, section 45), I would like to advise you that this complaint process provides a fair and thorough review of handling issues and of decisions taken pursuant to the Act, including decisions taken about where the public interest lies in respect of exempt information. This enables a fresh decision to be taken on a reconsideration of all the factors relevant to the points you have raised.

Please see the legal annex for the sections of the Act and other references that are referred to in this letter.

Reasons for decision

Before I explain the reasons for the decisions I have made in relation to your FoIA review, I thought that it might assist you if I outline the parameters set out by the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) within which a request for information can be answered.

The Freedom of Information Act 2000 creates a statutory right of access to information held by public authorities. A public authority in receipt of a request must, if permitted, confirm if that public authority holds the requested information and, if so, then communicate that information to the applicant.

The right of access to information is not without exception and is subject to a number of exemptions, which are designed to enable public authorities to withhold information that is not suitable for release. Importantly, the Act is designed to place information into the public domain, that is, once access to information is granted to one person under the Act, it is then considered public information and must be communicated to any individual should a request be received. 

I have considered your original request for information within the provisions set out by the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and have today decided that Sections 32(1) Court Records is engaged.  I therefore uphold Gill Brown's decision.  Although the review upholds the original MPS decision, in order to further explain the decision I have provided a supplementary explanation as to why this exemption was applied.

The review is guided by a previous Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) decision notice FS50353260 on a similar subject matter of Court Records where the Commissioners states 'information can only be withheld under section 32 if it solely held by the public authority by virtue of being in a court record and not elsewhere.  The first question, therefore, is whether the public authority holds the information in question only by virtue of it being contained in a document to which section 32 applies.'  This case can be viewed by found by way of the following link  http://www.ico.gov.uk/~/media/documents/de...s_50353260.ashx

Does the information being requested fall within the exemption in section 32 of FOIA

Section 32(1) provides that:

(1)Information held by a public authority is exempt information if it is held only by virtue of being contained in-
(a) any document filed with, or otherwise placed in the custody of, a court for the purposes of proceedings in a particular cause or matter,
(b) any document served upon, or by, a public authority for the purposes of proceedings in a particular cause or matter, or
© any document created by-
(i)a court, or
(ii)a member of the administrative staff of a court,
for the purposes of proceedings in a particular cause or matter.

In addition Section 32(4) defines "court" includes any tribunal or body exercising the judicial power of the State and "proceedings in a particular cause or matter"  includes any inquest or post-mortem examination.

The ICO guidance on Information contained in court records states 'the information covered is that which is held "only by virtue" of being contained in documents which have been Filed with or otherwise placed in the custody of a court (or tribunal), or Served upon or by a public authority, for the purposes of court proceedings (including inquests and post mortem examinations), or Placed in the custody of a person conducting an inquiry or arbitration or the purposes of that inquiry or arbitration, or Created by a court or member of the administrative staff for the purposes of court proceedings, or Created by a person conducting an inquiry or arbitration for the purposes of that inquiry or arbitration.' This guidance also provides examples of records covered by the exemption including witness statements, statements of case (particulars of claim, defence, counterclaim, defence to counterclaim and reply).

The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) manual of guidance also advises on information likely to be covered by this exemption namely 'anything generated by the court itself will attract this exemption in addition to anything produced by the police solely for court use.  Discovering the provenance and reasons for the existence of information is key to identifying whether this exemption may be engaged.'  In this regard the review takes note of the assistance provided to you in the refusal notice dated 23rd August 2011 which states 'the report requested was compiled by the MPS in their capacity as Coroner's Officer solely for the purpose of the inquest proceedings.' The review is therefore satisfied that the information requested falls within the exemption under section 32 court records.

The review takes note of your comment 'I wish to complain at the refusal to release the report as requested in this FOI.'  In this respect I would like to explain that section 32(1) provides class-based and absolute exemptions.  This means that if the information in question falls within any of the classes described in section 32(1)(a) to ©, it is exempt. There is no requirement to consider what harm, if any, may result through the disclosure of this information, nor any requirement to consider the balance of the public interest. As previously mentioned consideration of this exemption requires addressing only whether the information in question falls within any of the classes described in sections 32(1)(a)-©.

The review is also guided by the Information Tribunal [EA/2008/0087] which states 'There is some previous jurisprudence of the Tribunal in respect of the exemption under s. 32 of FOIA including: Szucs v IC (EA/2007/0075), Ministry of Justice v Information Commissioner (EA/2007/0120 & EA/2007/0121) and Mitchell v Information Commissioner (EA/2005/0002). The latter (which concerned transcripts of court proceedings) contains some helpful observations on the nature and scope of the s 32 exemption: "31 We remind ourselves that a court is not itself a "public authority" within s.3(1) (see Schedule 1) so that we are considering court records held by public authorities either as litigants, third parties subject to a court order or, as in the present case, interested parties.  Section 32(1) applies to three classes of court document. Paragraphs (a) and (b) seem to relate to documents filed or served by the parties or by a third party pursuant to an order of a court, eg, a summons requiring production of a document, either in civil or criminal proceedings. Paragraph © refers to documents created by a court or a member of the administrative staff of a court'

The Information Tribunal appeal can be found by way of this link http://www.informationtribunal.gov.uk/DBFi...%2028-04-09.pdf

The review is therefore satisfied that the information being requested, namely Theseus report - July 7 Inquest ref: INQ11410 is held in a relevant document, and that document was filed with or otherwise placed in the custody of a court for the purpose of proceedings in a particular cause or matter and that this information is only held by the MPS by virtue of being contained in the court records. 

Whilst I appreciate this is not the response you would have wished to receive I hope the considerations provided in this review has explained why on this occasion the MPS has maintained its stance to engage section 32(1)(a) of FoIA.

LEGAL ANNEX

Section 17(1) of the Act provides:

(1)A public authority which, in relation to any request for information, is to any extent relying on a claim that any provision of Part II relating to the duty to confirm or deny is relevant to the request or on a claim that information is exempt information must, within the time for complying with section 1(1), give the applicant a notice which-
(a) states that fact,
(b) specifies the exemption in question, and
© states (if that would not otherwise be apparent) why the exemption applies.

Section 32(1) Court Records provides

(1)Information held by a public authority is exempt information if it is held only by virtue of being contained in-
(a) any document filed with, or otherwise placed in the custody of, a court for the purposes of proceedings in a particular cause or matter,
(b) any document served upon, or by, a public authority for the purposes of proceedings in a particular cause or matter, or
© any document created by-
(i)a court, or
(ii)a member of the administrative staff of a court,
for the purposes of proceedings in a particular cause or matter.

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000/36/section/32

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Your attention is drawn to the attached sheet which details your right of complaint.
Should you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please write or contact me on telephone number 0207 161 3605 quoting the reference number above.

Yours sincerely

Mike Lyng
Quality and Assurance Advisor

COMPLAINT RIGHTS


Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome and encouraged to discuss the decision with the case officer that dealt with your request. 

Ask to have the decision looked at again –

The quickest and easiest way to have the decision looked at again is to telephone the case officer that is nominated at the end of your decision letter.

That person will be able to discuss the decision, explain any issues and assist with any problems.

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days from the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Public Access Office
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
PublicAccessOffice@met.police.uk

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your complaint within 20 working days.

The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner please visit their website at www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk.  Alternatively, phone or write to:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  01625 545 700

Total Policing is the Met's commitment to be on the streets and in your communities to catch offenders, prevent crime and support victims. We are here for London, working with you to make our capital safer.
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cmain
Posted: Nov 11 2011, 07:57 PM





Group: J7 Forum Team
Posts: 1,301
Member No.: 16
Joined: 19-January 06



QUOTE
The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) manual of guidance also advises on information likely to be covered by this exemption namely 'anything generated by the court itself will attract this exemption in addition to anything produced by the police solely for court use.  Discovering the provenance and reasons for the existence of information is key to identifying whether this exemption may be engaged.'  In this regard the review takes note of the assistance provided to you in the refusal notice dated 23rd August 2011 which states 'the report requested was compiled by the MPS in their capacity as Coroner's Officer solely for the purpose of the inquest proceedings.' The review is therefore satisfied that the information requested falls within the exemption under section 32 court records.


ACPO is notoriously not a public body but a private limited company. So why is their manual of guidance of any relevance? If J7 published a manual of guidance saying this material should be released, would they take any notice of that?
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Bridget
Posted: Jan 8 2012, 11:49 AM





Group: J7 Admins
Posts: 15,276
Member No.: 2
Joined: 26-November 05



QUOTE (Bridget @ Nov 7 2011, 06:20 PM)
^
QUOTE
Dear  Mr Dunne,

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2011090002950

Further to our letter of 12 October 2011, I have unfortunately been unable to meet the response time originally provided to you in relation to:

    Original FOI case number 2011060003689


I hope to complete your review no later than 2 December 2011. Should there be any unforeseen delay, I will contact you and update you as soon as possible.

I apologise for the delay, and thank you for your patience.

Should you have any further inquiries concerning this matter, please contact Sarah Strong on telephone number 020 7161 3604 or at the address at the top of the letter quoting the reference number above.

Thank you for your interest in the MPS.

Yours sincerely

Sarah Strong
FOIA Policy Research & Complaints Officer

QUOTE
FOIA Complaints Decision

From:    sarah.strong@met.police.uk
To:    julyseventh@fastmail.net
Date:    Tue, 13 Dec 2011 11:25 AM

Dear Mr Dunne,

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2011090002950

Further to our letter of 7 November 2011, I am now able to provide a response to your complaint dated 11 September 2011 concerning:

    Original FOI case number 2011060003689.


Original request (dated 27/6/11)

Request for the CCTV viewing logs mentioned by Ms Gallagher during the 7/7 Inquest

DECISION

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) has completed its review and has decided to:

    Set aside the original decision


REASON FOR DECISION

I would first like to take this opportunity to apologise for the delay to your internal review decision and thank you for your patience.

The original decision provided to you confirmed the information you sought was held but exempt by virtue of Section 30(1)(a)(b)©.

On careful review, I can confirm that the information you have requested is in fact no longer held by the MPS and was not held by the MPS at the time your request was received.

The MPS can therefore confirm that the information you have requested is not held.

The original viewing log referred to in your request was, at the request of LJ Hallett, submitted to the Inquests during the hearing. The MPS has liaised with a number of individuals who dealt with the original log and it is believed that the log was submitted to the Inquests and not returned.  Unfortunately a copy was not retained.  The original viewing log may still be retained by the Coroner.

I do apologise for any confusion caused by the original response which was provided in error.

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

If you are dissatisfied with this response please read the attached paper entitled Complaint Rights which explains how to contact the Information Commissioner with your complaint.

Should you have any further inquiries concerning this matter, please contact me on 020 7161 3604 or at the address at the top of this letter, quoting the reference number above.

Yours sincerely

Sarah Strong
FOIA Policy Research & Complaints Officer
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cmain
Posted: Jan 9 2012, 08:33 PM





Group: J7 Forum Team
Posts: 1,301
Member No.: 16
Joined: 19-January 06



QUOTE
From:    gill.brown@met.police.uk
To:    julyseventh@fastmail.net
Date:    Tue, 23 Aug 2011 2:26 PM


Dear Ms Dunne

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2011060003689

I write in connection with your request for information which was received by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 27/06/2011.  I note you seek access to the following information:

J7: The July 7th Truth Campaign request the following information under the FOIA:
1. The CCTV viewing logs as mentioned by Ms Gallagher during the recent 7/7 Inquests:

...

DECISION

Having located and considered the relevant information, I am afraid that I am not required by statute to release the information requested. This letter serves as a Refusal Notice under Section 17 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act).


Information Commissioner?
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Bridget
Posted: Jan 24 2012, 10:49 AM





Group: J7 Admins
Posts: 15,276
Member No.: 2
Joined: 26-November 05



QUOTE
Complaint against the Metropolitan Police Service[Ref. FS50430180]

From:    casework@ico.gsi.gov.uk
To:    julyseventh@fastmail.net
Date:    Tue, 24 Jan 2012 9:49 AM

24 January 2012

Case Reference Number FS50430180

Dear J7

I have been allocated the above complaint to investigate. This relates to a request that you made to the Metropolitan Police Service (the “MPS”) on 28 June 2011 for a full copy of its Theseus Report.

The complaints handling process

Where possible, the Information Commissioner aims to resolve complaints informally. If we believe a public authority should take further action we will ask it to do so. Similarly, if we decide a public authority has dealt with your request properly, and we do not believe that further action is required, we will give you the opportunity to withdraw your complaint.

I will ask the MPS to revisit your freedom of information request, now that we are involved, and consider if there is anything it can do to resolve matters quickly. If there is, I will contact you again.

If not, I will ask it to explain the way it handled your request and will carefully consider its reply.

If we are not able to resolve the case informally, the Information Commissioner will explain his decision in a ‘decision notice’. Where he decides that a request has not been handled properly, he may specify the steps he considers necessary to resolve the situation in the notice. This can include requiring a public authority to release information it has previously withheld.

If we write a decision notice in this case, we will send a copy to you and the public authority. We will also put a copy on our website with your details removed. If you disagree with our decision, you have a legal right of appeal to the Information Tribunal.

The scope of my investigation

The focus of my investigation will be to determine whether or not the MPS is able to rely on the exemption at section 32(1) to withhold the Theseus Report.

It usually takes about four months to complete an investigation and I will update you on my progress. However, if you have any queries, you can email me or call me on 01625 xxxxx. Please ensure that you quote the above case reference number in any correspondence.

Please will you confirm receipt of this email and also that you still wish me to proceed with my investigation

Regards
Carolyn Howes
Senior Case Officer

____________________________________________________________________


The ICO’s mission is to uphold information rights in the public interest, promoting openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals.

If you are not the intended recipient of this email (and any attachment), please inform the sender by return email and destroy all copies. Unauthorised access, use, disclosure, storage or copying is not permitted.
Communication by internet email is not secure as messages can be intercepted and read by someone else. Therefore we strongly advise you not to email any information, which if disclosed to unrelated third parties would be likely to cause you distress. If you have an enquiry of this nature please provide a postal address to allow us to communicate with you in a more secure way. If you want us to respond by email you must realise that there can be no guarantee of privacy.
Any email including its content may be monitored and used by the Information Commissioner's Office for reasons of security and for monitoring internal compliance with the office policy on staff use. Email monitoring or blocking software may also be used. Please be aware that you have a responsibility to ensure that any email you write or forward is within the bounds of the law.
The Information Commissioner's Office cannot guarantee that this message or any attachment is virus free or has not been intercepted and amended. You should perform your own virus checks.
__________________________________________________________________

Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF
Tel: 0303 123 1113 Fax: 01625 524 510 Web: www.ico.gov.uk


This post has been edited by Bridget on Jan 24 2012, 10:50 AM
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