Taxpayers face paying out millions more in compensation for the 2011 riots after the Court of Appeal ruled that police authorities were liable for consequential losses.
The public purse has already paid out millions for damage to property and goods under the Riot (Damages) Act 1886 but the court’s ruling extends liability to loss of profit, rent and other associated costs.
Last September the High Court ruled that taxpayers had to meet the costs of a fire at the Sony warehouse in Enfield because those responsible were acting in a riotous manner. However the Mr Justice Flaux said the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC), which oversees the Met Police, wasn’t liable for consequential losses.
MOPAC appealed the ruling, arguing that the incident wasn’t covered by the 1886 act, while the companies who housed stock at the warehouse and their insurers appealed the decision that they weren’t entitled to compensation for their losses.
Three appeal court judges have now ruled that MOPAC is liable both for the damage to the property, and the firms’ consequential losses.
Unless the decision is subsequently overturned it will allow firms to make further claims against MOPAC for losses not already covered by pay-outs.
MOAPC says it is “considering potential next steps in the legal process”.