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Decision Summary

  • Case Ref: FS50183238
  • Date: 25 August 2009
  • Public Authority: Surrey Police
  • Summary: The complainant requested information recording the advice received by the public authority from the Association of Chief Police Officers regarding a disagreement between the public authority and another police force about the approach adopted by the public authority when investigating deaths at the Deepcut Army Barracks. The public authority refused the request, citing the exemptions provided by sections 30(1)(a)(i) (information relating to investigations) and 36(2)(b)(i) (inhibition to the provision of free and frank advice). During the course of the Commissioner’s investigation, the public authority also cited section 40(2) (personal information). The Commissioner finds that the exemptions provided by sections 30(1)(a)(i) and 40(2) are not engaged and that section 36(2)(b)(i) is engaged, but that the public interest in maintenance of the exemption does not outweigh the public interest in disclosure. In failing to disclose the information on the basis of exemptions that the Commissioner has not upheld, the public authority did not comply with the requirements of sections 1(1)(b) and 10(1). The public authority also failed to comply with the requirements of section 10(1) in failing to confirm or deny whether it held information falling within the scope of the request within 20 working days of receipt, and section 17(1) in failing to issue a refusal notice within the statutory time limit. The public authority is required to disclose the information in question. This decision notice is currently under appeal to the Information Tribunal.
  • View PDF of Decision Notice: [1]