VN v Refugee Appeals Tribunal & Anor

Respondent/Defendant:Refugee Appeals Tribunal & Anor
Court/s:High Court
Citation/s:[2002] 8 ICLMD 91
Judgment Date/s:08 Jul 2002
Category:Refugee Law
Keywords:Refugee, Refugee Law, Refugee Status

The applicant applied for leave to challenge by way of judicial review the decision of the Refugee Appeals Tribunal to refuse him refugee status. He argued that the Refugee Appeals Tribunal did not properly consider his case and reached conclusions unsupported by evidence. He wanted the original interviewer to be compelled to attend the appeal hearing as a witness.

The Court held that the Tribunal could not be compelled to call the interviewer and that there was no lack of fair procedures. The Court found that there was no injustice to an applicant, who, prior to the appeal hearing, has all the appropriate documentation that his application has generated, in not having an opportunity to cross-examine. The Court held that the appeal hearing was an independent de novo investigative process and it was for the member of the Tribunal to make his own assessment, no matter what view the original interviewer may have formed.


A Tribunal cannot be compelled to call an applicant’s original interviewer to give evidence. Applicants for asylum do not have a right to cross-examine their interviewers.

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