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Khorasandjian v Bush [1993] 3 WLR 476

The claimant was an 18 year old woman who was being harassed by the defendant a 23 year old man. He had threatened her with violence, behaved aggressively when he saw her, shouted abuse at her, he would pester her with phone calls at her parents and grandparents house. He had spent time in prison for threatening to kill her. She obtained an injunction in civil law against him to prevent him “using violence to, harassing, pestering or communicating” with her. The defendant appealed against the injunction on the ground that the judge had no jurisdiction to grant such an injunction as harassing, pestering or communicating did not constitute any tort known to law. Whilst the persistent telephone calls were capable of constituting the tort of nuisance, the claimant did not have an interest in the land and therefore had no cause of action in tort law.

Held:

His appeal was dismissed.

Dillon LJ:

“To my mind, it is ridiculous if in this present age the law is that the making of deliberately harassing and pestering telephone calls to a person is only actionable in the civil courts if the recipient of the calls happens to have the freehold or a leasehold proprietary interest in the premises in which he or she has received the calls.”
NB this case was overruled in Hunter v Canary Wharf
Back to lecture outline on nuisance in tort law