REVIEW OF INQUIRIES AND OVERLAPPING PROCEEDINGS:
1. In this preliminary report we consider
whether there is scope for combining criminal, civil and other
proceedings with a public inquiry. We also consider ways of improving
the relationship between, and the sequence of, different types
of legal proceedings that can arise out of the same or related
circumstances ("parallel proceedings") and whether the
delay, cost and the risk of prejudice involved in such proceedings
can be reduced. Our recommendations for further consideration
(set out at Appendix A) are made on the basis that they
will need further study for their full implications.
2. We were aware that extensive consideration
had already been given to many of the issues involved, so decided
to start our review by consulting those Government Departments
and agencies with relevant experience of inquiries and investigations.
We have listed those we consulted at Appendix B and we
would like to record our appreciation of the generous help they
gave us. As a basis for our discussions we prepared a summary
of the difficulties we foresaw. This is attached at Appendix
C. At Appendix D we have listed the documents we consulted
to derive the background to the issues.
3. Public inquiries may be set up under
different regimes eg
(a) Under express statutory power;
(b) Under the Tribunals of Inquiry (Evidence)
(c) Under powers impliedly conferred
(d) As ad hoc Inquiries into
matters of public concern.
Some of those we consulted had extensive experience
of both public and private inquiries and we found their advice
on the relative advantages and disadvantages of each most helpful.
As an individual's criminal or civil liability is required to
be determined at a fair and public hearing,
proceedings will need to be held in public if such liability is
to be determined as part an inquiry.
4. In the course of our consultation we noted
the views of experienced officials who firmly believe that public
inquiries today are not achieving the original objectives for
which they were set up. These objectives were set out in the synopsis
of the officials' working group on inquiries and criminal proceedings.
They include a detailed but speedy investigation of the facts
leading to the accident, occurrence or situation to establish
how it occurred and how it can be avoided in future. Additionally,
after a serious disaster, there is a public expectation that an
inquiry will establish whether anyone should be held criminally
responsible. The overall aim of a public inquiry is to allay grave
and to restore public confidence.
5. The focus of the investigation carried
out at a public inquiry is to establish the circumstances and
the cause of the accident or occurrence. It is not concerned with
blame, or civil responsibility. It aims to discover the true facts
by an inquisitorial process.
Evidence received by the inquiry about the events and the actions
of those involved may, however, imply fault. In the interest of
fairness, the person affected is entitled to be informed of any
criticism, to be represented, and to take part in the proceedings
with a view to exonerating himself.
The procedure is then vulnerable to adversarial conventions which
can greatly prolong the inquiry. This is particularly the case
when many individuals become entitled to take part, and do so
with legal representation provided at public expense.
6. The adversarial process also tends to
stimulate media interest giving greater publicity to adverse criticism
of individuals concerned. This may, in turn, affect the quality
of the evidence produced to the inquiry. Recent experience of
public inquiries where many parties have been represented has
led officials to conclude that an inquiry can very often be more
effective if held in private, but with its report being made public
on conclusion. We recognise, of course, that there will be circumstances
in which a private inquiry will not be appropriate.
7. When an accident causes loss of life
or serious injuries, relatives and victims generally feel that
those responsible should be identified and prosecuted in the criminal
courts if a criminal offence has been committed. In some recent
inquiries relatives and victims have become dissatisfied because
there has been no prosecution, and they have persisted in pressing
for charges to be brought. Dissatisfaction tends to be most keenly
felt when no charges are brought against the management of a company
or corporation perceived to have put public safety at risk. The
difficulty of proving a charge of manslaughter in these circumstances
is well known,
but relatives and victims are not always impressed by legal difficulties.
8. In some cases to enable the inquiry to
reach the truth it has been found necessary, in the public interest,
for witnesses to be given formal undertakings that the evidence
they give to the inquiry will not be used in any subsequent criminal
prosecution. These undertakings apply only to the use of evidence
given to the inquiry. They do not preclude prosecution if sufficient
other evidence to prove an offence is available.
The use of undertakings is considered important as it encourages
witnesses to disclose what they know with the utmost candour.
The decision to give undertakings is taken by the Attorney General,
sometimes at the request of the inquiry chairman, and sometimes
after discussion with the witness's legal representative. Because
the reasons for giving the undertaking are not made in public,
however, relatives or victims attending the inquiry hearing may
not always understand why the undertaking has been given, or its
In summary, in spite of the best efforts of
the most able and experienced chairmen, a public inquiry often
fails to meet its fundamental purpose and the expectations raised
in the public mind when it is announced.
9. Although it is obviously important to
try to reduce the extent to which parallel proceedings overlap,
our consultation exercise also indicated that combining several
different proceedings with a public inquiry is likely to prolong
the hearing, and further delay publication of its report.
It seems to us that it is at least as important
to try to speed up the inquiry process, to increase public awareness
of the difficulties of satisfying all its expectations, and to
consider the possibility of eliminating the repetitive nature
of some of the individual processes.
10. The circumstances giving rise to the
need for a public inquiry vary greatly. In recent times the most
frequent calls for public inquiries have arisen in the following
(a) Accidents causing loss of life in
the course of transport by sea, land or air, or arising from
construction operations, employment or industrial processes;
(b) Medical catastrophes;
(c) Serious administrative failure,
eg failure to detect or forestall child abuse;
(d) Financial collapse, usually, but
not always, involving serious fraud.
11. We consider the most formidable difficulty
of our study is the attempt to integrate a criminal trial into
the inquiry procedure. As Lord Scarman said in the course of his
opening statement at The Red Lion Inquiry, ". . . It is not
the object of this Inquiry to label people as offenders against
the criminal law . . .".
Some of the evidence collected for the purpose of the inquiry,
however, may be sufficient to support a prosecution against a
person involved. The issue of priority of proceedings may then
This issue was considered by an officials working
group under the chairmanship of the Lord Chancellor's Department
which met between May and November 2000.
The group drew attention to the competing interests which might
have to be resolved. Our consultations did not indicate that such
difficulties arose in practice. Save in exceptional circumstance,
the interest of ensuring a fair trial in criminal proceedings
is paramount. If there is a real risk that an inquiry held at
the same time may cause prejudice to the accused, it will be necessary
to decide which of the public interests involved should prevail.
Any combined process would have to satisfy the provisions of Article
6 of the ECHR, the evidential requirements of a criminal trial,
the right of the accused to elect trial by jury in serious cases
and the need to guard against prejudice.
The integration of the trial itself does not
seem to us to be practicable at present. In his review of the
Lord Justice Auld made some far reaching recommendations for liberalising
the technical rules of evidence which, if accepted, might alleviate
the difficulties posed by the present evidential requirements
of the criminal trial. Similarly, Lord Justice Auld's proposals
concerning the right to elect trial by jury in serious and complex
fraud cases, if accepted, could make a combined process more acceptable.
It might be possible to invest a legally
qualified chairman with the powers of an examining magistrate
(along the model of the continental juge d'instruction) to enable
the inquiry to consider whether there is sufficient evidence to
justify the trial of a criminal charge.
12. We see similar difficulty in trying
to incorporate the decision of civil claims into the inquiry.
Article 6 of the ECHR applies equally to the determination of
civil rights and obligations. Serious objection could be taken
to the fairness of proceedings in which individuals other than
the claimant and defendant have taken part, and have given evidence
that would not have been admitted if the civil proceedings had
been heard separately. However punctiliously the inquiry chairman
may filter the evidence and impartially approach his decision,
a claimant or defendant might complain that the decision had been
subconsciously influenced by inadmissible evidence.
13. The inability to unite a criminal or
civil trial with an inquiry does not, however, preclude an attempt
to identify improvements to particular aspects of the procedure
of the inquiry, and its relationship to parallel proceedings.
The success of the inquiry rests heavily on the efficiency of
the original investigation process.
We consider that the powers of investigators
should be reviewed to decide whether they need to be increased.
We also consider that there should be a review
of inquiry procedures with the aim of reducing delay and expense.
We also think that further consideration
should be given to trying to eliminate duplication in different
proceedings based on the same or related facts, and to combining
individual aspects of some of the various proceedings.
14. From time to time it has been suggested
that a permanent agency such as an Accident Bureau should be set
up to take charge of the investigation of major disasters.
Another suggestion is that an Ombudsman should be appointed to
decide whether an inquiry should be held and, if so, the nature
and extent of the inquiry.
It is argued that important decisions about the scope of the investigation
and the inquiry should be decided independently of government.
We accept that in setting the scope of an inquiry which might
criticise a Government Department there might be the temptation
to restrict the inquiry's terms of reference. But in the majority
of cases no such question will arise.
We are not convinced that there is a need
either for a permanent Accident Investigation Agency, or for a
new disasters Ombudsman.
15. We were greatly impressed with the detailed
accounts given to us of the procedure adopted by the Air Accidents
Investigation Board and the Marine Accidents Investigation Board
and we commend proposals made recently by the Department for Transport
for the creation of a Rail Accident Investigation Board after
the same model.
The Health and Safety Commission has wide powers under the Health
and Safety at Work etc Act 1974
to appoint an inquiry into any accident or occurrence connected
with the general purposes of part 1 of that Act. The Health and
Safety Executive has considerable experience of investigating
serious industrial accidents, and can deploy an experienced organisation
with the necessary specialist skills.
16. Generally the officers of the local
police force will be first on the scene of a disaster. Other agencies
may also carry out an investigation independently, and at the
same time. Each police force has a senior officer capable of taking
charge of serious incidents, and protocols exist between the police
forces and other investigating organisations to ensure co-operation
with one another. We were, however, told by one senior police
officer with considerable experience of accident investigation
that the progress of an investigation might be improved if a person
were appointed as Chief Investigator. This person would be available
to take charge of an investigation from the outset and would ensure
the setting up of the appropriate infrastructure (such as the
Holmes computer system and the availability of the necessary experts),
and would direct the lines of enquiry. We were told that enquiries
at some investigations have been hampered by the absence of a
power of entry to obtain documents and articles relevant to the
At present investigators believe thatwith legal adviceparties
with significant documents can easily delay production of potentially
important material by insisting that investigators resort to time-consuming
and expensive procedures. In our interview with the British Transport
Police we were given a graphic example of this
and told that the number of officers involved in the exercise
had serious consequences for the ordinary work of the force.
We consider that further consideration should
be given to the creation of a permanent post of Chief Investigator.
We envisage that the person appointed would be responsible not
only for overseeing the investigation, but also for directing
any necessary expert examinations and for preparing a file for
the inquiry chairman, setting out the results of the investigations.
This file would normally form the basis of the evidence given
to the inquiry and thus of its findings of the events and actions
which led to the occurrence.
17. In his final report of the Thames Safety
Lord Justice Clarke said:
"Finally, it does seem to me that the time
has come when it would be desirable to set up a statutory framework
for Inquiries generally . . . There is at present no generally
applicable statute which covers public inquiries."
Lord Justice Clarke went on to express the opinion
that it would be desirable to remove the adversarial aspects of
inquiries, and to give the inquiry chairman the power to conduct
the inquiry as he or she thought fit, subject to an overriding
obligation of fairness. The inquiry should have powers, so far
as appropriate, to compel witnesses to give evidence and to obtain
documents and would be subject to judicial review. He thought
that such an approach ought to save time and money.
18. Our discussions confirmed the need for
greater assistance to be given to inquiry chairmen by formal rules
of procedure. The Royal Commission on Tribunals of Inquiry
recommended that there should be no statutory rules of procedure
because of the need both for flexibility and to avoid delay over
alleged breaches. The then Government accepted this proposal.
The Royal Commission also made recommendations to minimise the
"risk of injustice to individuals". These recommendations
have formed the basis of the "Salmon" procedure which
is now generally adopted and liberally interpreted. This inevitably
introduces adversarial elements into a public inquiry which add
significantly to delay and expense. Parties with the same, or
similar, interests are often separately advised and represented,
usually at public expense. The same issues are explored in lengthy
cross-examination several times over and it becomes increasingly
difficult for the chairman to confine the ambit of the inquiry
to the core issues. It is, however, arguable that publication
of a report containing criticism of an individual who has not
been permitted to vindicate his position at a public hearing does
not amount to a breach of the provisions of the ECHR.
We consider that the operation of the "Salmon"
procedure should be reviewed.
Consideration should be given to re-examining
the nature of an interest justifying participation in an inquiry
at public expense. A person seeking to take part in the hearing
should be required to state clearly, and in writing, the basis
of his interest.
Consideration should be given to the greater
use of written submissions generally.
Consideration should also be given to the
appointment of one counsel to represent all interested parties
at the inquiry whose interests do not conflict.
19. Another cause for delay in recent public
inquiries has been the increasing tendency for decisions connected
with the inquiry to be challenged by application for Judicial
Review. Attempts have been made to review a Minister's discretion
to decide the form of inquiry, and whether it should be held in
although we think it unlikely that such proceedings would be successful
in the future.
There are nevertheless other "interlocutory" applications
which cause delay and which could be controlled by appropriate
rules. Two alternative possibilities occurred to us:
(i) The powers of a Minister who
orders an inquiry could include giving the inquiry chairman a
range of judicial powers, in addition to those of compelling witnesses
to attend and the disclosure of documents; or
(ii) Rules could provide that applications
concerning a pending inquiry be made to the Administrative Court.
In either case time limits could be laid
down to ensure the smooth progress of the inquiry.
20. In some inquiries, even though the primary,
direct or immediate causes of the disaster have been established
relatively speedily, the inquiry report is delayed because of
anxiety to investigate all the possible underlying, contributory
or more remote causes of the disaster.
We acknowledge the need to explore the possible
root causes of a disaster, and to make recommendations for future
prevention. We consider, however, that in some cases this could
conveniently be done as a second stage to the inquiry.
21. Some very experienced investigators
we consulted took the view that when victims, and the support
groups they sometimes form, take part in the wider aspects of
the inquiry, their views tend to be given too great an emphasis
in the discussion of safety matters and the public interest. Others
thought that the inquiry was not the best forum to decide safety
recommendations, and that recommendations in the past had been
made that were impracticable or beyond the resources available.
To meet this difficulty, a chairman has, on occasion, divided
the inquiry into two parts: the first part investigating the causes
of the accident or occurrence, and the second part making recommendations.
We consider this two-part approach could
be more generally applied by inquiry chairmen.
22. The "Salmon" procedure has
tended to make it difficult for an inquiry chairman to curtail
questioning once representation has been given. If the first stage
of an inquiry were confined to the factual causes of the disaster,
it ought to be possible for the inquiry to follow an inquisitorial
approach more closely. We appreciate that a decision confined
to the events and actions leading to the occurrence may give rise
to an implication of fault, and that before any report containing
criticism is made public a person criticised must, in fairness,
have an opportunity of putting his side of the matter.
We consider that preliminary findings of
the basic factual causes of the disaster or occurrence should
make it easier to confine representation, and to identify the
scope of the next stage of the inquiry. This should lead to the
report of the first stage of the inquiry being available more
23. After the first stage of the inquiry,
a short interval could provide an opportunity to consider other
matters. If, for example, the CPS had concluded that there was
insufficient evidence to initiate criminal proceedings, and if
the chairman had the appropriate powers, relatives or victims
who were dissatisfied with the CPS decision could seek review
of the decision at a public hearing.
We consider that relatives and victims would
more readily accept a decision not to prosecute after such a hearing.
24. Provided the contentions of interested
parties have been presented and considered by the inquiry, the
inquiry's findings as to the cause of the accident or occurrence
ought to be presumed to be correct in subsequent civil proceedings.
The findings should only be subject to review if compelling new
evidence is produced. This should reduce repeated examination
of the same facts and facilitate subsequent negotiations over
civil responsibility to pay compensation.
We think that consideration should be given
to enacting such a provision.
25. Once the factual causes of the accident
have been established, obvious preventative measures will normally
be apparent to those concerned in the industry or undertaking
concerned. The inquiry will, however, still need to examine the
background events to decide whether additional safety recommendations
need to be made. The type of accident and the industry or undertaking
involved will determine the scope of this stage of the inquiry.
The chairman will normally conduct this stage with the assistance
of assessors experienced in the industry or undertaking concerned.
We consider it is desirable for the inquiry's
recommendations to be confined to those which can be introduced
without delay. The inquiry should make it clear if recommendations
are for the longer term to avoid unjustified criticism of those
who are expected to implement them.
26. The reform of the law of involuntary
manslaughter and the problems of corporate responsibility for
that offence have long been under discussion. After a disaster
such as the Southall Rail Crash, relatives of the deceased and
the injured expect that those responsible will be prosecuted,
and if found guilty, punished. When a director or manager has
been shown to be at fault but escapes prosecution or conviction
because of the difficulty in proving a charge of manslaughter,
the victims of the disaster feel particularly aggrieved. More
generally, respect for the law is diminished. It is interesting
to compare this position with the situation when a company or
undertaking causes a serious accident by breach of Health and
Safety regulations. If the offence is shown to be attributable
to any neglect of duty by a director or manager, the director
or manager, as well as the company, is guilty of the offence.
27. It is anomalous that if an equally serious
accident occurs, for example, due to an offence by a railway undertaking,
a director or manager who has neglected his duty is not similarly
guilty of an offence. This state of affairs is seen as incongruous
by relatives and victims (and others too): they are not concerned
with the impersonal and somewhat detached nature of corporate
liability, but with the just punishment of those actually responsible.
The difficulty of proving recklessness or gross carelessness in
these kind of cases is often the reason why no prosecution is
brought. This difficulty could be overcome by introducing the
more realistic offence of endangering the safety of passengers,
or the public, and by introducing a provision
that where a company or an undertaking commits the offence, and
it is shown to be attributable to any act or neglect of duty by
a director or manager, that person too is guilty of the offence.
We believe that further consideration should
be given to introducing such a provision, or a similar measure,
to bring the responsibility of directors and managers in public
transport undertakings into line with the responsibility of directors
and managers in companies occupying or managing factories.
28. The Secretary of State for Health has
a wide discretion to direct an inquiry to be held, 69 and to appoint
persons to hold the inquiry. The person appointed has the power
to issue a summons to any person to attend to give evidence on
oath if required to do so, and to produce documents. If an untoward
event occurs in a hospital or in connection with NHS treatment,
there will be an initial investigation conducted by an
independent person appointed by the relevant Health Authority.
At this investigation it is particularly important that those
involved feel able to speak with the utmost candour and that what
they say will remain confidential until it has been evaluated.
The Authority pays particular attention to involving any patient
or relatives concerned.
29. The principal purpose of inquiries of
this kind is to "learn lessons" from the events to prevent
recurrence. For this reason it is usual for these inquiries to
be held in private, although with interested parties present.
In some instances, for example, where more than one untoward occurrence
has raised serious questions about the way medical care has been
managed, the circumstances call for a public inquiry. If a criminal
offence has been committed, the trial will usually have already
taken place so the question of combining criminal or disciplinary
proceedings with the inquiry process does not arise.
30. When medical inquiry hearings are held
in public, there may be a large amount of technical evidence with
many patients possibly affected. It is clearly important to contain
"Salmon" representation at these hearings. Any attempt
to decide civil liability at the inquiry would, however, inevitably
lead to greater adversarial content, to witnesses' reluctance
to speak openly, and to considerable delay.
The manner in which clinical negligence claims
are handled is a significant factor affecting the incidence of
representation and the adversarial content of a medical inquiry.
We understand that the Chief Medical Officer is considering options
for the reform of the way clinical negligence claims are handled
and is expected to report his recommendations to Ministers shortly.
We think that the outcome could have an important bearing on the
procedures of medical inquiries.
31. Disciplinary proceedings before the
appropriate professional bodies often arise out of the same or
related facts as those before the medical inquiry. We do not,
however, think it practicable to combine disciplinary proceedings
with the inquiry procedure. A body such as the Professional Conduct
Committee of the General Medical Council is specially constituted
to determine medical competence and ethics and has many years'
experience in judging these matters. A medical practitioner who
is aggrieved by the decision of the disciplinary body has the
right of appeal. When an inquiry has made specific findings relevant
to the question before the professional body, we are confident
that it would proceed on the basis of the facts found, unless
the case was most exceptional.
32. Public inquiries into serious administrative
failure are often directed under the Local Government Act 1972
or under the Children Act 1989. They are usually ordered to investigate
the failure of supervision by a public sector agency to prevent
some serious event or occurrence. The abuse of children has given
rise to several inquiries of this kind in recent times.
These inquiries are often characterised by the lengthy historical
period of the investigation, the large number of individuals who
may be criticised and who accordingly take part,
and by the time taken to conclude them.
33. It is in the nature of inquiries into
administrative failure that criminal proceedings arising from
the underlying facts will have already taken place, although the
evidence at the inquiry may bring more offences to light. In these
circumstances it is not practical to combine the criminal proceedings
with the inquiry. The circumstances may, however, disclose regulatory
offences which are triable summarily. It might be practicable
to combine the hearing of such an offence with the inquiry, but
to do so would have a serious impact on the candour of witnesses.
It is already the practice in this type of inquiry to give an
undertaking to witnesses that no disciplinary action will be taken
as a result of the evidence given. We were left in no doubt about
the value attached to this form of undertaking. Combining civil
proceedings with the inquiry would be likely add to delay, as
many parties might be involved.
We think, however, that the findings of fact
of a public inquiry into serious administrative failure should
be given presumptive effect in subsequent civil proceedings.
34. The financial sector is subject to strict
The investigation of the collapse of a financial organisation
poses particular problems. The Secretary of State for Trade and
Industry has wide powers to initiate an investigation into the
affairs of a company by appointing inspectors
to make a report to him,
and to publish a report of the findings of the investigation.
If it appears in the course of the investigation that a criminal
offence has been committed which has been referred to the prosecuting
authority, the Secretary of State may direct that the investigation
be discontinued. Sometimes as the result of criminal conduct by
those in charge of the organisation, the collapse occurs before
any investigation under the Companies Act is possible. In this
case, an extensive criminal investigation will be the first step
in unravelling complex dealings with the assets.
35. Because of the international nature
of financial dealings today, any major financial fraud investigation
has to be undertaken by specialist forensic accountants appointed
by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO). The priorities of the investigators
are to discover what has happened, to trace and, if possible,
to recover the assets, and to bring those responsible to justice.
An inquiry into circumstances outside the criminal prosecution
is likely to concentrate on failure by the regulator or responsible
Government Department to monitor the activities of the collapsed
organisation. In addition to those who have lost their money in
the financial collapse, those who may be criticised will seek
to be represented. In our view, to widen the scope of an inquiry
into financial collapse to include questions of civil liability
would make it too unwieldy.
We believe, however, that consideration should
be given to introducing a provision that the facts found by an
inquiry into financial collapse should be presumed to be true
in subsequent civil proceedings, subject to compelling fresh evidence.
This should relieve claimants of the burden of proving the complex
manipulations used to defraud them, and should result in significant
saving of time and cost.
36. We note that a certified copy of the
inspector's report is admissible as evidence of the inspector's
opinion relating to any matter in the report, and as evidence
of facts in proceedings under the Company Directors Disqualification
It has been held that the contents of an
inspector's report are not admissible in ordinary litigation,
but we believe that the report of a public inquiry should be admissible
in ordinary litigation to the same extent as an Inspectors report
in proceedings under the Company Directors Disqualification Act.
Further Proceedings after Financial Collapse
37. After a financial collapse it is likely
that there will be regulatory or disciplinary proceedings, or
both. Lord Irvine drew attention to the waste of resources in
such multiple proceedings in his KPMG lecture.
Lord Irvine's remarks came shortly after the Society for Advanced
Legal Studies had set up a working group on Financial Regulations.
In its report
the Society made 12 recommendations.
Although it did not accept the possibility of incorporating criminal
proceedings into the inquiry process, the Institute proposed a
unified investigation, and recommended that the SFO should be
able to produce reports of investigations for publication. It
also endorsed Lord Irvine's view that there was a strong case
to be made that after conviction of an offender, a single body
should be responsible for deciding all the penalties, including
regulatory and disciplinary sanctions. It made the point that
this should encourage plea-bargaining and so reduce cost and delay.
We believe that there is scope in these proposals
for considerable saving in time and resources.
38. In the course of our discussions with
the SFO, we were told that some criminal courts in the Netherlands
were able to exercise at least some regulatory and disciplinary
We have not at this stage followed up this
information, but if this aspect of our project is pursued, we
believe it could be a helpful line of enquiry.
39. One of the officials we consulted believed
that in France and Spain an administrative process was available
that included the power to appoint a commission of inquiry into
an accident or disaster with wide powers to decide liability,
regulatory penalties and damages.
We have not researched this process but if
the belief is correct, a comparison with continental systems could
be of considerable help in suggesting an additional route for
avoiding repetitive and expensive proceedings.
Sir Roy Beldam
40 For example, under section 250 of the Local Government
Act 1972, section 84 of the National Health Service Act 1977 or
section 14 of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. Back
Article 6, European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). Back
Proceedings which follow disasters: the relationship between
inquiries and criminal proceedings (5 April 2002). Back
See Report of the Royal Commission on Tribunals of Inquiry under
the Chairmanship of Lord Justice Salmon ("the Salmon Report")
(1966) (Cmnd 3121). Back
See for example The Cairns Committee Report (1961) (CAP 169). Back
Usually referred to as "the Salmon procedure". Back
Because of the serious nature of the circumstances giving rise
to public concern, or where the inquiry is intended to satisfy
the requirements of Article 2 of the ECHR. See Edwards and another
v United Kingdom. (1 April 2002). Back
We are aware of proposals to reform the law of corporate manslaughter:
Home Office Consultation Paper (May 2000). Back
Statements taken during investigations by Air and Marine Accident
Investigation Branches are even more strictly controlled. Back
Preliminary Statement to the Red Lion Square Inquiry held under
section 32 of the Police Act 1964. Back
Proceedings which follow disasters: the relationship between
inquiries and criminal proceedings. Back
Review of the Criminal Courts of England and Wales (October 2001),
Chapter 11, paragraphs 76 to 128, and recommendations 244 to 262,
in particular recommendation 255. Back
Review of the Criminal Courts, chapter 5, paragraphs 173 to 206
and recommendations 37 to 39. Back
See New Law Journal 17 May 2002 "Why an Accident
and Disaster Bureau is needed." Back
See eg letter of 19 July 2002 to Foreign and Commonwealth
Office from UK Families Flight 103. Back
Department for Transport Consultation paper: Establishing
a Rail Accident Investigation branch (July 2002). Back
Section 14. Back
Under the Health and Safety Act 1974 the Secretary of State is
authorised by regulation to give such power. Back
It concerned the Hatfield rail crash. Back
Cmnd 4558 (2000). Back
Ibid. 11.59. Back
Thames Safety Report paragraph 11.60. Back
Under the Chairmanship of Lord Justice Salmon (1966), Cmnd 3121. Back
White Paper 1973, Cmnd 5313. Back
Fayed v UK (Application 17101/90) (1994) 18 EHRR 393,
See R v Secretary of State for Health ex p Wagstaffe and another
 1 WLR 292. Back
In the light of the Court of Appeal decision in Persey &
others v Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural
Affairs. (15 March 2002). Back
See section 37(1) Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. Back
Cf. section 34 Offences Against the Person Act 1861. Back
Under section 84 National Health Service Act 1977. Back
We were told of a similar approach by the Lord Advocate's Department
in fatal accident inquiries in Scotland. Back
Eg The Shipman Inquiry; Inquiry into children's heart surgery
at the Bristol Royal Infirmary. Back
Eg Inquiry into the abuse of children in care in the former county
council areas of Gwynedd and Clwyd since 1974 under chairmanship
of Sir Ronald Waterhouse; The Victoria Climbie« Inquiry (2002). Back
230 interested parties were identified in the Waterhouse Inquiry,
although some were grouped together. In the Shipman Inquiry 15
groups of interested parties have been identified. Back
Eg Under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000, and under
the Companies Act 1985. Back
See Part XIV of the Companies Act 1985. Back
Ibid section 437. Back
See section 441 of the Companies Act 1985. Back
Savings and Investment Bank Ltd v Gasco Investments (Netherlands)
BV  1 WLR 271, not followed in interlocutory proceedings
in AG v Wallbrook Insurance Co Ltd  1 WLR 1017. Back
The feasibility of a unified approach to proceedings arising
out of major city frauds delivered on 24 June 1998. Back
Report on Parallel Proceedings published in December 1999. Back
See paragraphs 8.1 to 8.12. Back