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He was convicted of a criminal offence, which was subsequently reversed following an out of time appeal or was the subject of a pardon;

This was on the grounds of new or newly discovered facts

That show beyond reasonable doubt that there had been a miscarriage of justice

He suffered punishment as a result of the conviction

The earlier non-disclosure of the unknown fact was not wholly or partly attributable to him.

If all the elements are established, the Home Secretary is under a mandatory duty to pay compensation102.  Compensation is assessed by an independent Assessor (currently Lord Brennan QC).  The Assessor is obliged to apply analogous principles of civil law in assessing pecuniary and non-pecuniary loss103.  The elements that an applicant must establish in order to qualify for compensation are briefly considered below.

A conviction reversed on appeal or subject to a pardon

57.A successful application under section 133 can only be made if the person in question was convicted of an offence.  Further, the definition of the conviction being reversed104 excludes appeals brought within the usual time limits.  The most common situation that will fall within the definition of “reversed” is where a conviction has been quashed as a result of a referral to the Court of Appeal by the Criminal Cases Review Commission105.  The concept of a conviction being “quashed” does not include where the Court of Appeal allows an appeal against conviction but substitutes a conviction for a lesser offence, as this is not a quashing of the conviction for the purposes of section 3 of the Criminal Appeal Act 1995106.  

New or Newly Discovered Facts

58.A new or newly discovered fact is to be contrasted with a new legal ruling made on previously existing facts.  Thus, where a conviction is quashed out of time because

102 Subsection (2).

103 R (O’Brien, Hickey & Hickey) v Independent Assessor [2004] EWCA Civ 1035.

104 Subsection (5).

105 Under sections 9 – 12 of the Criminal Appeal Act 1995.

106 R (Christofides) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2002] EWHC 1083.

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