Mr. Alan Moses QC

Oral Answers to Questions — Attorney-General – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 22nd March 1993.

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Photo of Mr Tam Dalyell Mr Tam Dalyell , Linlithgow 12:00 am, 22nd March 1993

To ask the Attorney-General on how many occasions Mr. Alan Moses QC has appeared as counsel to Her Majesty's Government.

Photo of Sir Nicholas Lyell Sir Nicholas Lyell Attorney General (Law Officers)

Alan Moses QC has appeared frequently for the Crown in civil and criminal proceedings. From 1985 until 1990, he was Standing Counsel for the Inland Revenue.

Photo of Mr Tam Dalyell Mr Tam Dalyell , Linlithgow

Why did he say that he had read the relevant documents and did not consider them to be of any use to the defence for the foreseeable future? What explanation can there be, other than that so able and experienced a lawyer was trying, quite improperly, to protect Ministers, even though it meant that directors of Matrix Churchill could land up in prison? And, please, do not hide behind the skirts of Lord Justice Scott.

Photo of Sir Nicholas Lyell Sir Nicholas Lyell Attorney General (Law Officers)

Alan Moses is independent counsel of high standing and integrity. Instead of casting aspersions in his own way, the hon. Gentleman should await the outcome of the careful and independent inquiry being conducted by Lord Justice Scott.

Photo of Mr Ivan Lawrence Mr Ivan Lawrence , Burton

Is not it the case that the defence counsel in the Matrix trial wrote to The Times and stated specifically that Mr. Alan Moses for the Crown had behaved perfectly properly in every way and had performed in accordance with decided cases? Is not it, therefore, an appalling slur on Mr. Moses that the hon. Member for Linlithgow (Mr. Dalyell) has totally refused to consult the defence counsel before making his allegation?

Photo of Sir Nicholas Lyell Sir Nicholas Lyell Attorney General (Law Officers)

My hon. and learned Friend draws attention to a letter which is in the public domain and which could well be consulted by the House generally. I suggest that it gives a more balanced view than that of earlier questioners.

Photo of Mr Tam Dalyell Mr Tam Dalyell , Linlithgow

In view of the totally unsatisfactory reply, I should like to raise the matter on the Adjournment.