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R v Crown Court at Reading, ex p Hutchinson [1988]

Facts

  • Bye laws made it a criminal offence to trespass in Reading’s local RAF base
  • Hutchinson, a trespasser, was arrested for such an act

Issue

  • Could a public law defence be raised in criminal proceedings (regarding the validity of the bye law)?

Decision

  • Yes

Reasoning

  • Magistrates are bound to enquire as to the validity of rights if bought as a defence; on the facts there was no successful defence to be found
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