COURT OF APPEAL (CIVIL DIVISION)
ON APPEAL FROM Queen's Bench Division
Mr Justice Cooke
Strand, London, WC2A 2LL
B e f o r e :
| Mr Philip Graham Bell
|- and -
|The Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police
Smith Bernal Wordwave Limited, 190 Fleet Street
London EC4A 2AG
Tel No: 020 7421 4040, Fax No: 020 7831 8838
Official Shorthand Writers to the Court)
Crown Copyright ©
Sir Mark Potter P:
"I am arresting you on suspicion of theft and false accounting in connection with James C Bell and Partners and the other limited companies you are involved with."
"Mr Bell's claims for wrongful arrest and false imprisonment therefore fail. His claims in respect of trespass to property also fail. His claim for trespass to goods, conversion/ unlawful interference and unlawful retention succeed in principle, to the extent that it can be shown that he had an entitlement to possession and return of the material in question which will be the subject of further determination by this court if there is no agreement between the parties. As this hearing was on liability alone, any question of damages will also fall to be dealt with along with the determination of the particular documents which were wrongfully seized or wrongfully retained."
"… As already discussed, the basis upon which the warrant was obtained cannot be challenged indirectly by this route, and there are, in any event, authorities which show that a search warrant which refers to items in general terms (e.g. "bank accounts") in the context of suspected offences of which the Magistrates are informed, does not contravene section 15(6)(b) where it is clear that references relate to the suspected offence [or] offences. Here the offence was specified as theft and explained by DS Hartley orally."