Did Possessing an Altered Passport Break the Law?
In the case of Hobbs v Winchester Law Society (1933), the issue revolved around the possession of an altered passport. The court deliberated whether the act of possessing a passport, even if unknowingly altered, constituted a breach of the law.
The judgment in this case was that possessing an altered passport, regardless of the possessor’s awareness or lack thereof regarding the alteration, was considered an offense. The court ruled that the responsibility lay with the possessor, emphasizing the act of possession itself as a violation of the law.
This decision set a precedent that emphasized the seriousness of possessing altered passports, irrespective of the possessor’s knowledge about the document’s alteration. It implied that merely having such a document could lead to legal consequences, highlighting the importance of vigilance and caution regarding possession of sensitive documents like passports.