Case details

The Minister of Energy and Energy Affairs (Respondent) v Maharaj and another (Appellants) (Trinidad & Tobago)

Case ID: JCPC 2018/0068

Jurisdiction: The Court of Appeal of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago

Case summary

Issue(s)

In what circumstances and by whom can a licence for the selling of petrol granted by the Minister be suspended or revoked?

Facts

This is a judicial review claim brought by two brothers, the Appellants, against a government minister for suspending or revoking their licence to sell petrol.

The Appellants operated petrol stations under annual licences issued by the Minister. In 2012, the Minister suspended operations at the two petrol stations following inspections by officials, who alleged unsafe practices and breaches of the licences. The Appellants were not permitted to return to the petrol stations.

The Appellants brought claims for judicial review arguing that the Minister had no power to suspend their licences and had acted in breach of a settled practice in suspending their stations without first giving them a chance to remedy or respond to the charges against them.

The High Court found that the Minister had effectively revoked the Appellants’ licences, that he had no power to do so, and in any event the decision was unfair and taken in breach of legitimate expectations of the Appellants because they had not been given the opportunity to rectify the alleged problems. The Minister’s decisions suspending and revoking the licences were quashed. On appeal, the Court of Appeal held that the Minister had an implied power to suspend the licences, there had been no procedural unfairness, and the Minister had acted proportionately and reasonably. The Court set aside the High Court’s order. The Appellants appeal this judgment.

Parties

Appellant(s)
  1. Adesh Maharaj
  2. Prakesh Maharaj
Respondent(s)

The Minister of Energy and Energy Affairs

Appeal

Justices

Lord Hodge, Lord Lloyd-Jones, Lord Briggs, Lord Sales, Lord Hamblen

Hearing start date

02 Apr 2020

Hearing finish date

02 Apr 2020

Watch hearing
02 Apr 2020 Morning session Afternoon session
 

Judgment details

Judgment date

11 May 2020 (not delivered in court)

Neutral citation number

[2020] UKPC 13