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CRB fear leads to wrongful arrest case

31 March 2011

This week the High Court found in favour of a teacher who alleged he was wrongfully arrested following an allegation of assault by a pupil. Regardless of his willingness to attend a police station for questioning the police chose to arrest him. No further action was taken following the arrest.

Whilst the court’s agreed that the arrest was wrongful, it does not follow that the CRB check will be clear. It is often the case that police include arrest information on CRB disclosures regardless of outcome, putting the onus on employers to make the decision on suitability. The Protection Freedoms Bill offers a token improvement by giving individuals the right to request a review of the disclosure. If the courts wanted to ensure that the police took CRB disclosures more seriously, they should have imposed a duty to act reasonably when deciding the Desmond case in December.

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