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Decision Summary

  • Case Ref: FS50162256
  • Date: 16 November 2009
  • Public Authority: Home Office
  • Summary: The complainant requested information in relation to the issue of whether or not a public inquiry should be held into the London bombings which occurred on 7 July 2005. The Home Office refused the request citing the exemptions at sections 21 (information accessible to applicant by other means), 23 (information supplied by, or relating to, bodies dealing with security matters), 35 (formulation of government policy) and 36 (prejudice to effective conduct of public affairs). During the course of the Commissioner’s investigation, the Home Office additionally cited section 42 (legal professional privilege) in relation to some of the withheld information. The Commissioner has investigated and found that the exemptions are engaged. However, in relation to section 36, he finds the public interest in maintaining the exemption does not outweigh the public interest in disclosure. He therefore requires the Home Office to disclose the information withheld by virtue of section 36. The Commissioner has also identified a series of procedural shortcomings on the part of the public authority relating to delay (sections 10(1) and 17(1)) and failure to specify appropriately the exemptions cited and the reason they applied (section 17(1))c)). This decision notice is currently under appeal to the Information Tribunal.
  • View PDF of Decision Notice: [1]