Home Office wins e-Borders appeal

Home Office let off the hook after court rules department does not have to pay damages to defence firm 


By Sarah.Aston

19 Feb 2015

The Home Office has successfully appealed against an order to pay US defence firm Raytheon Systems Ltd (RSL) £224m for the early termination of an e-Borders contact.

Raytheon were originally awarded a nine-year contract to run the e-Borders programme by the Labour government but in 2010, home secretary Theresa May scrapped the contract, saying Rytheon had failed to meet deadlines and “parts of the programme were running at least a year late”.

Raytheon denied that they were to blame for programme failures and threatened to sue the government for £500m.

In August 2014, a tribunal ruled that the government contract to deliver the e-borders programme was unlawfully terminated and the Home Office were ordered to pay £50m in damages, plus other costs.

This week, technology and construction court judge Mr Justice Akenhead overruled the tribunal’s decision, saying the original ruling was “tainted by serious irregularity so as to cause substantial injustice”.

In response to winning the appeal, a Home Office spokesperson said: “We are pleased with the judgement handed down today by the court. However, the legal process is ongoing and it would be inappropriate for us to comment further at this time.”

Raytheon have said they are planning to appeal the decision.

A spokesman said: "RSL is determined to pursue an appeal of this decision, to enforce the tribunal's award and to recover the sums due to RSL for wrongful termination of the e-Borders contract."

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