Quentin represented Miss DC, who was subject to an investigation by the Information Commissioner’s Office in respect of a breach of section 55 of the Data Protection Act 1988. The circumstances were that Miss DC was employed by two NHS Doctors surgeries as a practice manager; when she left her employment at both practices she allegedly took a significant amount of confidential material with her in breach of the Act. The client was very concerned about the investigation as in nearly identical cases the ICO has successfully prosecuted individuals (see for example- https://ico.org.uk/about-the-ico/news-and-events/news-and-blogs/2019/04/former-nhs-manager-fined-for-sending-personal-data-to-her-email-account/)
Fortunately, the client approached Quentin pre-charge and he was able to liaise with the investigators at an early stage in order to try to ensure that the investigation moved in a direction favourable to his client. He secured her representation at an interview under caution, drafted a comprehensive pre-prepared statement and thereafter made detailed representations to the ICO about the detrimental effect of a conviction upon the client both personally and professionally.
Following receipt of the representations, the ICO made the decision that they would not prosecute and offered Quentin’s client a Caution under section 55 of the Act. An ICO caution is not a criminal conviction and is not registerable on the Police National Computer. This was a major victory for the client who needed a clean DBS record for her employment.
If you are under investigation or have been charged with a data protection offence, it is vital that you secure experienced and tactically aware representation. Quentin Hunt is a criminal barrister with a formidable reputation for dealing with Data Protection Act offences. You may contact Quentin for a free, no obligation conversation about your case.