Freedom of Speech: Hate Crime - Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 3:16 pm on 6th December 2017.

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Photo of Lord Marks of Henley-on-Thames Lord Marks of Henley-on-Thames Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Justice) 3:16 pm, 6th December 2017

The Question from the noble Lord, Lord Vinson, makes the distinction between the perception of the victim and the hostile motivation of the accused, which has to be proved in court. I suggest that that is a very arid distinction in the context of decisions to investigate and prosecute. Does the Minister agree that the CPS can realistically base its definition of hate crime only on the perception of victims? Will she reaffirm the emphasis in her earlier Written Answer on the importance of the CPS retaining the confidence of the minority communities that are targeted by hate crime?