Day two of historic Brexit legal challenge over Article 50

Gina Miller, who brought court case challenging Prime Minister's right to trigger Brexit without MPs' approval. Picture: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images
Gina Miller, who brought court case challenging Prime Minister's right to trigger Brexit without MPs' approval. Picture: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images
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The UK’s highest court is set to hear a second day of argument in the historic Brexit legal challenge.

James Eadie QC, for the Government, will continue his attempt to persuade 11 Supreme Court justices to rule in its favour over its planned strategy for exiting the European Union.

He is urging the panel, headed by the court’s president Lord Neuberger, to overturn a ruling against the Government by the High Court on November 3.

The Lord Chief Justice Lord Thomas and two other judges decided that Prime Minister Theresa May lacked power to use the royal prerogative to trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty and start the two-year process of negotiating Brexit without the prior authority of Parliament.

In a case of “great constitutional importance”, the Supreme Court has heard a claim that it is for the Government to exercise prerogative powers in the conduct of the UK’s affairs on the international plane.

Long before the start of the second day of the appeal on Tuesday, members of the public joined a lengthy queue in the hope of getting a place inside the court to witness the proceedings.

The case, which will finish on Thursday with a judgment reserved until the new year, has attracted worldwide attention.

As well as hearing further submissions from Mr Eadie, the judges will start to hear argument this afternoon on behalf of Gina Miller, an investment fund manager and philanthropist, who was the lead claimant in the successful High Court judicial review action.

The justices are also set to hear from other parties, including Northern Ireland and the Welsh and Scottish Governments.

The justices have emphasised that the appeal concerns an issue of law, and is not about the wider political questions surrounding the UK’s departure from the EU.