Clause 1 - Authorisation of criminal conduct

Part of Covert Human Intelligence Sources (Criminal Conduct) Bill – in the House of Commons at 2:15 pm on 15th October 2020.

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Photo of Gavin Robinson Gavin Robinson Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Home Affairs), Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Defence) 2:15 pm, 15th October 2020

I support new clause 3. I think the emphasis behind it is right, and the work that the right hon. Gentleman’s Committee does is very important. There was an interesting line in the report published by the Committee on 5 October on Northern Ireland terrorism that touches on this Bill. It said, “Authorisations are used sparingly”, and then it gave the proportion of members of the services that have had authorisations, but that number featured in the published report as “***”. I only want to raise with the right hon. Gentleman the point that, while it is important that his Committee has access to that important information, the information could be made available. There is always a consideration, to various degrees, about what is contained in reports and what is not, but it does not seem to me that that is sensitive, and for the purposes of this debate, it would actually have been an incredibly helpful figure to have.