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Civil Liberties & Human Rights

False Imprisonment Claims

Susie Labinjoh
Susie Labinjoh
Alice Hardy
Alice Hardy
Jocelyn Cockburn
Jocelyn Cockburn
Sasha Barton
Sasha Barton
Nancy Collins
Nancy Collins

The police have extensive powers to arrest and detain individuals. However, the use of those powers must be lawful.

False imprisonment, also referred to as wrongful arrest or unlawful detention, most commonly occurs where the police make an arrest which can’t be legally justified. It also arises where the arrest was initially lawful but the length of detention is excessive or the procedural requirements of detention are not met.

Hodge Jones & Allen Solicitors is ranked in the top tier UK law firms for actions against the police (Chambers UK 2019).

We’ve developed a formidable reputation for taking successful legal action against the police for false imprisonment and wrongful arrest/unlawful detention.

Securing compensation & justice

We frequently secure compensation for clients. However, for many of those who come to us for help aren’t interested in money; they’re motivated by a desire to ensure lessons are learnt so no-one has to go through what they went through. We’ve obtained admissions of wrongdoing and apologies which have resulted in disciplinary proceedings against the police, as well as changes to police practice. We’ve also obtained agreements for the deletion of our client’s data from police databases in certain circumstances.

By working closely with our large Criminal Defence team where necessary, clients benefit from a comprehensive level of service unmatched by other law firms.

Our solicitors in the Civil liberties and Human Rights team are active members of the Police Action Lawyers Group, a national organisation comprised of solicitors and barristers who specialise in representing claimants against the police.

If the police have deprived you of your rights, our award winning Civil Liberties and Human Rights team will work tirelessly to hold the police to account.


How to get in touch & what happens next

Contact our highly experienced team

Whatever your needs, our team of highly experienced solicitors can provide you with the help and advice you need. To seek advice from our specialist team of solicitors contact us by telephone or through our online form.

We’ll gather the information to review your case

Once we have spoken to you and obtained the details of your complaint we will be able to let you know whether we can assist you. If we are able to assist one of our specialist solicitors will be in touch to discuss the case with you in more detail and talk about your options.

To contact our leading Civil Liberties & Human Rights team call
or request a call back.

Featured case

False imprisonment, assault and malicious prosecution

On 1 April 2013, a husband and wife were at home asleep, as were their sons aged 11 and 19 years old. At approximately 3.30am four police officers came to their home and forced entry after ‘the wife’ opened the door, claiming they didn’t need a warrant.

In the commotion, ‘the wife’ was forced against a wall, causing injury to her right arm, while ‘the husband’ was punched in the head, dragged to the ground outside, handcuffed and assaulted a number of times. The police conducted a search with dogs of the flat stating that they were searching for class A drugs. However, no drugs were found.

‘The husband’ and ‘the wife’ were taken to the police station where they were further arrested for immigration offences, despite being EU citizens from Italy and Portugal respectively. They were held in police custody for approximately 22 hours and were eventually charged with assaulting a police officer in the execution of his/her duty. ‘The husband’ and ‘the wife’ were prosecuted and were acquitted after a full hearing at the magistrates’ court.

Hodge Jones & Allen Solicitors brought claims on their behalf for false imprisonment, assault and malicious prosecution which ended in their favour and settled on 3 October 2017.

Frequently asked questions

Can I make a complaint if someone is mistreated in custody?

If the individual is 18 years old or over then they will need to make a complaint themselves. This is relatively straightforward with the support of a specialist police complaints solicitor.

How can I fund my claim?

Court proceedings are costly. There are a number of possible ways to fund a claim. You may be eligible for public funding known as Legal Aid or we may be in a position to agree to a Conditional Fee Agreement depending on the circumstances of your case.

Further Reading
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    Actions Against The Police
    Human Rights
    Death in Custody