Judge denies campaigners interim interdict to stop Boris Johnson - but brings forward main hearing

PUBLISHED: 10:51 30 August 2019 | UPDATED: 15:52 30 August 2019

'Boris Johnson' digs a grave at the foot of a tombstone during a protest organised outside Downing Street in London. Photograph: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire.

'Boris Johnson' digs a grave at the foot of a tombstone during a protest organised outside Downing Street in London. Photograph: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire.

A cross-party group of MPs and peers have had their request for an interim interict rejected, but their full case will still be heard next week.

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They had called for the interim interdict until a final decision was made on the case after Johnson went ahead and announced that parliament was being suspended for five weeks from September 10.

But judge Lord Doherty dismissed the action ahead of a full hearing scheduled for next week.

He said: "I'm not satisfied that it has been demonstrated that there's a need for an interim suspension or an interim interdict to be granted at this stage."

He said a substantive hearing was already set to place on Friday September 6 "before the first possible date parliament could be prorogued".

But he brought that hearing forward to Tuesday September 3 "in the interest of justice".

Aiden O'Neill QC, representing those for the action, had argued for the substantive hearing to be moved forward.

He said: "There is an urgency to this - any delay is prejudicial - not just to the prejudice of the petitioners, but to the country as a whole."

Lord Doherty said: "I'm going to move the substantive hearing forward to Tuesday.

"Weighing consideration in the balance, it's in the interest of justice that it proceeds sooner rather than later."

The decision came after the Queen approved Johnson's request for parliament to be suspended for five weeks from September 10.

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