Litigation Recent Decisions 30/05/95

Breathalyser procedure and quashing of conviction

R v Burton upon Trent magistrates court, ex parte Phillip John Woolley (1994). (DC (Beldam LJ and Buxton J) 11/11/94).

Summary: The Crown Prosecution Service's advice to a defendant that it had presented inadmissible evidence was incorrect, and procedure for taking blood specimens from drivers in hospital.

Application for judicial review of conviction on a plea of guilty to driving with excess alcohol contrary to s.5(1)(a) Road Traffic Act 1988 with a sentence of four months' imprisonment where the CPS had told the applicant's solicitor it would not oppose an appeal because there had been an irregularity in taking the blood specimen from him while in hospital.

The supposed irregularity per Williams v DPP (1994) RTR 241 and DPP v Warren (1993) AC 319 was that the constable had not asked the appellant whether there was any reason why a blood specimen should not be taken by a doctor.