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 Julian Lewis Julian Lewis Chair, Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament, Chair, Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament 2:15 pm, 15th October 2020

The hon. Gentleman, with whom I worked so closely on the Defence Committee, as always gets to the heart of the matter. He says that, indeed, we have made reference in the context of Northern Ireland to numbers and scale in precisely the way we are seeking to be able to do here. Whether something is then made public is always a matter for debate and negotiation between the ISC and the agency concerned, but where it cannot be made public, that is where the ISC in a sense comes into its own. We exist to be able to see things that for good reasons cannot be made public, but we can then at least give assurance to Parliament that we have seen what cannot be made public and we are reasonably satisfied with it, and that is what this is all about.