Law report: CASE SUMMARIES v 21 April 1997

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The following notes of judgments were prepared by the reporters of the All England Reports.

Capital gains tax

Garner (Inspector of Taxes) v Pounds Shipowners and Shipbreakers Ltd; ChD (Carnwath J) 21 Feb 1997.

For capital gains tax purposes, the cost of obtaining release from restrictive covenants incurred after the date of an agreement for an option for the sale of land was deductible in computing a gain accruing on the sale of the option. In identifying the consideration received for the option, the sum necessary to obtain the release was to be taken into account, even though at the time of the option agreement the expenditure had not yet been incurred and the amount had not been ascertained. The consideration received by the taxpayers was the agreed option price less the amount needed to obtain it.

Michael Furness (IR Solicitor) for the Crown; David Ewart (Warner Goodman & Streat, Fareham) for the taxpayers.

Bostock v Totham (HMIT); ChD (Sir John Vinelott) 20 March 1997.

The surplus amount of the price paid by an enterprise zone syndicate for an industrial building, after the construction costs and the price paid for the land on which the industrial building stood had been subtracted, was to be apportioned in accordance with the formula contained in s 42(2) of the Taxation of Chargeable Gains Act 1992 in order to calculate the land value for the purposes of capital allowances under s 10(B) of the Capital Allowances Act 1990.

John Walters (Edwin Coe for Halliwell Landau) for the plaintiffs; Timothy Brennan (IR Solicitor) for the Crown.


R v Beedie; CA (Cr Div) (Rose LJ, Dyson and Timothy Walker JJ) 11 March 1997.

The plea of autrefois convict was applicable only where the second indictment charged the same offence as the first indictment, although the trial judge had a discretion to stay the proceedings where the second offence arose out of substantially the same facts as the first. That discretion should be exercised in favour of an accused unless the prosecution established that there were special circumstances for not doing so.

Robert Smith QC, Bernard Gateshill (Registrar of Criminal Appeals) for the appellant; K Roger Keen QC and David Tremberg for the Crown.


Re Al-Salaam; QBD (Div Ct) (Auld LJ, Brian Smedley J) 11 April 1997.

There was no requirement that the committal charge in an extradition case should identify the statutory provision on which it was based, since the committal proceedings were proceedings in regard to an extradition request, as opposed to "proceedings for an offence" within the terms of r 100 of the Magistrates Courts Rules 1981.

James Lewis (Kingsley Napley) for the applicant; John Hardy (CPS) for the Governor of Brixton Prison and the US Government.


Customs & Excise Commrs v Help the Aged; QBD (Lightman J) 28 Feb 1997.

Minibuses adapted for carrying wheelchairs in such a way that seats could easily be fitted instead if required were "permanently" adapted for the safe carriage of handicapped persons so that they were zero- rated for VAT.

Michael Kent QC (C & E) for the Crown; Roderick Cordara QC (Wedlake Bell) for Help the Aged.