Venables, Re (No 2, Court of Appeal - Family Division, August 08, 2018, [2018] EWHC 2128 (Fam)

Resolution Date:August 08, 2018
Issuing Organization:Family Division
Actores:Venables, Re (No 2
 
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Neutral Citation Number: [2018] EWHC 2128 (Fam)

Case No: FD18F00008

IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUSTICE

FAMILY DIVISION

(In open court)

Royal Courts of Justice

Strand, London, WC2A 2LL

Date: 8 August 2018

Before :

SIR JAMES MUNBY

(Sitting as a Judge of the High Court)

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In the matter of the person previously known as Jon Venables

Application by Ralph Stephen Bulger and James Patrick Bulger (No 2)

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Mr Robin Makin (of E Rex Makin and Co) for the Applicants

Mr Edward Fitzgerald QC and Mr Jonathan Price (instructed by Bhatt Murphy) for JV

Mr Simon Pritchard (instructed by the Government Legal Department) for the Attorney General

Hearing date: 20 July 2018

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Judgment Approved

This judgment was delivered in open court

Sir James Munby (Sitting as a Judge of the High Court) :

  1. On 3 May 2018, following a hearing in public on 1 May 2018, I handed down a judgment explaining the directions I had given with a view to the hearing of this matter: Re the person previously known as Jon Venables; Application by Ralph Stephen Bulger and James Patrick Bulger [2018] EWHC 1037 (Fam).

  2. As I explained (judgment, para 8), the Ministry of Justice (``MOJ'') had declined an invitation from the Applicants' solicitor, Mr Robin Makin, to be a party, for reasons set out in a letter from the Government Legal Department dated 27 April 2018:

    ``The MOJ's involvement in this matter is solely as the holder of the documents which Mr Ralph Bulger seeks access to through the subject access request under the Data Protection Act 1998 ... that he has made to the MOJ. MOJ have no view to give on the maintenance or otherwise of the injunction ... at this stage.''

    That remained MOJ's stance following receipt of a further email from Mr Makin on 30 April 2018. I said (judgment, para 27) that I was still unclear as to precisely why and on what legal basis Mr Makin was contending for the joinder of the Ministry of Justice and the production by it of the extensive documentation he seemed to be seeking. I made clear (para 28) that it is no proper part of the judicial function I am here exercising to police, let alone enforce compliance by it with, the MOJ's obligations arising in relation to Mr Ralph Bulger's subject access request under the Data Protection Act 1998. That, I said, is a matter for others in other places. I went on (para 29(iii)) to direct that if...

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