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Protection of Freedoms Bill

Part of Resource Extraction (Transparency and Reporting) – in the House of Commons at 6:12 pm on 1st March 2011.

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Photo of Yvette Cooper Yvette Cooper Shadow Home Secretary, Shadow Minister (Equalities Office) (Women and Equalities) 6:12 pm, 1st March 2011

My hon. Friend makes a really important point that goes to the heart of the problem. The reason for emergency legislation through primary legislation to change those powers is, in theory, to give Parliament the chance to scrutinise, debate and decide whether the action is reasonable. In practice, however, it is very hard to see how Parliament will be able to discuss the detail at all without being at serious risk of prejudicing a potentially dangerous investigation and important case, which we would all want to see go properly through the courts, with the proper judicial process followed.

That is why I say to the Home Secretary that it seems sensible to explore whether there are alternatives, such as bail conditions and other procedures with a judicial process, that might be used in such extreme circumstances. We all hope that the circumstances do not arise, but those alternatives would reduce our need to use emergency legislation.