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Porter v Magill [2002]


  • Dame Shirley Porter organised and ran a scheme in which houses could be purchased by their residents for very low prices, in an effort to increase the chances of her re-election
  • The scheme was said to be illegal and so Dame Porter would face £31 million in personal liability if an investigation proved so


  • Could the resulting investigation’s decision be quashed where an initial press conference appeared to be biased


  • No


  • A new (and final) test of bias was found:

Whether the fair minded and informed observer would conclude that there was a real possibility of bias.

  • Dame Shirley suddenly didn’t have any assets, but was eventually fined for a much lesser sum
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