London, WC2A 2LL
B e f o r e :
(SIR BRIAN LEVESON)
MRS JUSTICE THIRLWALL DBE
MR JUSTICE LEWIS
| R E G I N A
|WILLIAM THOMAS MITCHELL
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Miss A Levitt QC & Miss C Goodwin appeared on behalf of the Crown
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"a doctor, nurse or paramedic falls within the definition of a man accepting an office of trust concerning the public, answerable criminally for misbehaviour in office."
"Nothing in the authorities justifies the conclusion that the 'strict confinement' should be to the position held by whomsoever is carrying out the duty: rather, it should be addressed to the nature of the duty undertaken and, in particular, whether it is a public duty in the sense that it represents the fulfilment of one of the responsibilities of government such that the public have a significant interest in its discharge extending beyond an interest in anyone who might be directly affected by a serious failure in the performance of the duty. This is consistent with Lord Mansfield's observation in Bembridge referring to 'an office of trust concerning the public.'"
"In our judgment the aphorism from the evidence adopted by [counsel for an appellant] that 'a nurse is a nurse' does not start to do justice to the task which these appellants undertook. The responsibilities of a nurse in a general hospital are to patients for whose care they are responsible; the responsibilities of a nurse (whether trained as a prison officer or not) in a prison setting are not only for the welfare of the prisoners (their patients); they are also responsible to the public for, so far as it is within their power to do so, the proper, safe and secure running of the prison in which they work. The duties [of a prison nurse] ... more than amply fulfil the requirements of a public office..."