Gavin Brown: Bereaved family granted permission in application for judicial review

Monday 8 April 2024

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A judge has granted permission for an application for judicial review brought by the family of Gavin Brown, a father-of-two who died on 20 April 2019 following an altercation outside a pub in Stretford.

After receiving positive advice from a specialist public law barrister, Jodie Blackstock of Garden Court Chambers, in August 2023, lawyers acting for Gavin’s family submitted an application to the Administrative Court requesting judicial review of the decision of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) not to prosecute a security guard who was investigated by Greater Manchester Police (GMP) in relation to Gavin’s death. Judicial review is a type of court proceeding whereby a judge reviews the lawfulness of a decision or action made by a public body – in this case, the CPS.

In February 2024, Mr Justice Fordham granted the family’s application, observing “I am satisfied that the grounds of claim cross the threshold of arguability, and that the case warrants consideration at a substantive hearing.” The case will now proceed to a two-day court hearing from 17-18 July 2024 in Manchester.

This comes as hugely welcome news for Gavin’s family in their prolonged efforts to obtain justice for Gavin following his death.

If the judge is satisfied that the CPS’s decision was unlawful, the Administrative Court will quash the decision and the CPS will be required to re-make it.

Gavin’s family said:

“In a few weeks’ time, we will mark the fifth anniversary of Gavin’s death. We have never given up in our fight for truth and accountability. The Judge’s decision to grant permission in our application for judicial review is a huge vindication of our efforts.”

Gavin’s family are represented by Lucie Boase of Broudie Jackson Canter solicitors, who said:

“The threshold for obtaining permission in an application for judicial review is extremely high; the latest official statistics show that in the last quarter, only 12% of applications reached the permission stage. It is therefore very encouraging that the judge considers that there is merit to the arguments we have submitted in Gavin’s case. We look forward to the hearing in July and the opportunity to present our case before the judge.”

See press coverage: Manchester Evening News.

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