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Rhodesia (Bingham Report)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 19th December 1979.

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Photo of Mr Robin Maxwell-Hyslop Mr Robin Maxwell-Hyslop , Tiverton 12:00 am, 19th December 1979

If I heard my right hon. and learned Friend aright, the Director of Public Prosecutions has enunciated what I understand to be an entirely new principle, namely, that if a malefactor has retired he is now to be immune from prosecution. The Attorney-General referred to people who "had died or retired".

I understand that people who are dead cannot be prosecuted, but is the same doctrine to apply to burglars if they have retired? This is a serious point. If retirement confers immunity from prosecution, is this to be a precedent across the whole field of criminal law?