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Decision Summary

  • Case Ref: FS50134653
  • Date: 1 September 2008
  • Public Authority: Cabinet Office
  • Summary: The complainant asked the public authority for details, including the identities and/or Departments, of those who had commented on the drafting of the dossier on ‘Iraq’s Programme for Weapons of Mass Destruction’ between 11 and 16 September, other than those already in the public domain or submitted by the Defence Intelligence Staff. The public authority withheld the information, citing the exemptions contained in section 36(2) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (‘the Act’). During the Commissioner’s investigation it applied a further exemption, section 24(1). The Commissioner decided that, because the complainant had made another freedom of information request to the public authority for any comments made on the dossier, this subsumed the request in the current case, and it was not therefore necessary to decide whether the exemptions had been properly applied in this case. However, the Commissioner decided that the public authority had delayed in issuing its refusal notice and therefore failed to comply with its duty under section 10(1) to confirm or deny within 20 working days whether it held the requested information, and also breached section 17(1) by failing to provide the details required by that section within 20 working days.
  • View PDF of Decision Notice: [1]