Removal of Foreign National Offenders and EU Prisoners

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:35 pm on 6th June 2016.

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Photo of Kenneth Clarke Kenneth Clarke Conservative, Rushcliffe 3:35 pm, 6th June 2016

When I was the Home Secretary’s colleague as Justice Secretary, it was my pleasure to bring to a conclusion in the Council of Ministers the negotiations begun by the previous Government to get the EU-wide agreement that prisoners could be compulsorily returned to the their own country. Progress of course depends on the efficiency and priority applied to that by the bureaucracies of every Government across Europe, but I congratulate her on the very good progress being made here. Will she point out to my hon. Friend Sir William Cash that if we were not members of the European Union, we would go back to a system where we had absolutely no ability to deport anybody to their country of origin unless we could persuade the Government of that country to accept them?