Information Technology Law Reports - Volume 16 - Issue 3

This edition of Information Technology Law Reports contains two cases. The issue in the first, Jason Rawding v Seaga UK Ltd, was whether certain emails had been forged. The appellant applied for permission to rely on additional expert evidence from a data recovery specialist. This evidence came to light after the trial and was previously believed to contain no useful information. The Court of Appeal allowed the appeal, admitted the evidence and ordered that the question of the authenticity of the emails be referred back to the trial judge for determination in light of the new evidence. The second case, (1) News Group Newspapers Ltd (2) Tom Newton Dunn (3) Anthony France (4) Craig Woodhouse v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolisconcerned ‘Plebgate’, the infamous encounter between the government Chief Whip and a police officer at Downing Street. The Investigatory Powers Tribunal (‘IPT’) had to determine whether authorisations under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (‘RIPA’) to obtain communications data revealing journalists’ sources breached Article 10 ECHR. The IPT held that they did but not in all respects. The IPT upheld the granting of 3 of the 4 RIPA authorisations. The relevant Code of Practice in force at the time included no specific protection for journalists and their sources. The revised 2015 Code, however, requires judicial as opposed to police authorisation for surveillance relating to journalistic sources. 

Richard Budworth
Editor, Information Technology Law Reports

Jason Rawding v Seaga UK Ltd
Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
Lord Dyson MR, Tomlinson LJ and Burnett LJ
20 February 2015
[2015] EWCA Civ 113

Admissibility - data recovery expert's report - authenticity of emails - fresh evidence - Civil Procedure Rules 1998 r.52.10(2)(b) - appeal allowed. 

(1) News Group Newspapers Ltd (2) Tom Newton Dunn (3) Anthony France (4) Craig Woodhouse v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis
Investigatory Powers Tribunal
Burton J, Carr J, Charles Flint QC, Susan O'Brien QC and Professor Zellick CBE QC
17 December 2015
[2015] UKIPTrib 14_176-H

Police - journalism - communications data - authorisations - right to protect source of information - whether necessary and proportionate - sources of information - freedom of expression Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 section 22 - European Convention on Human Rights 1950 Article 10 - Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984, section 9 and Schedule 1 - Human Rights Act 1998 sections 6 and 8(1) - complaint upheld with regard to one authorisation.