From FOIwiki
Jump to navigationJump to search

Decision Summary

  • Case Ref: FS50107084
  • Date: 28 February 2008
  • Public Authority: Chief Officer of Bedfordshire Police
  • Summary: The complainant requested statements obtained during the public authority’s investigation of events surrounding his son’s death and other statements obtained in relation to an event which occurred some time before his son’s death. He also requested a copy of a report compiled by an officer of the public authority. The public authority refused citing the exemptions at Section 40(2) (Unfair Disclosure of Personal Data) and Section 30 (Investigations Information). Some information was disclosed outside the scope of the Act as a gesture of goodwill. The complainant was dissatisfied with the extent of this private disclosure and complained to this office arguing that all the requested information should have been disclosed to him under the Act. Focussing on that information which remains withheld from the complainant, the Commissioner has decided that the public authority has correctly applied the exemption at Section 30(1) to the information that it holds. Given that Section 30(1) applies to all the requested information, the Commissioner has not considered the application of any other exemption cited. However, the Commissioner is not satisfied with the public authority’s refusal notice in three respects. Firstly, it did not construe an earlier request of a similar nature as a request under the Act and therefore its response to that earlier request was out of time. Secondly, it failed to confirm or deny whether it held some information caught by the scope of the earlier request which was not specifically referred to in a later request. Thirdly, its explanation of the application of Section 40(2) is confusing and inaccurate. He has therefore decided that the public authority did not comply with all its obligations under Section 1(1)(a), Section 17(1) and Section 17(3). This decision notice is currently under appeal to the Information Tribunal.
  • View PDF of Decision Notice: [1]