The Queen (On the Application of Smeaton) v. Secretary of State for Health
Family Law Reports 2002; 2002(2): 146-251.
Court Decision;  2 Family Law Reports 146; 2002 May 10 (date of decision). The Queen's Bench Division held that a criminal statute proscribing the supply, administration, or use of any substance to procure a miscarriage did not prohibit the sale of emergency contraception ("morning after pill"). A privately funded lobbying organization brought suit to enjoin pharmacists from selling emergency contraception to women over the age of sixteen without a prescription. The organization argued that emergency contraception prevents implantation after fertilization, and that Parliament had intended to prevent interference with implantation by criminalizing miscarriage. Miscarriage is to be interpreted using modern parlance; under the contemporary understanding miscarriage refers only to the disruption of pregnancies after implantation. Furthermore, pre-implantation methods of contraception have been available to, and used by, the general public for decades. Therefore, emergency contraception which merely prevents implantation or fertilization is not prohibited as supplying, administering, or using a substance to procure a miscarriage. [KIE/ECL]
Great Britain. England and Wales. Supreme Court of Judicature, Queen's Bench Division
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The Queen on the Application of Pretty v. Director of Public Prosecutions (Secretary of State for the Home Department as Interested Party) Unknown author (Great Britain. England and Wales. Supreme Court of Judicature, High Court of Justice, Queen's Bench Division, Administrative Court, 2001-10-18)Court Decision:  EWHC Admin 788; 2001 October 18. The Queen's Bench Division held that the European Convention on Human Rights did not require the state to provide crimina immunity to a third party who assists in the ...