Crime (Overseas Production Orders) Bill [HL] - Report

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:50 pm on 22nd October 2018.

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Photo of Baroness Hamwee Baroness Hamwee Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Immigration) 4:50 pm, 22nd October 2018

My Lords, Amendment 7 is an amendment to Clause 5, which deals with the contents of an order. If my amendment were agreed to, subsection (2) would read:

“The judge must not specify or describe in the order electronic data that … consists of or includes excepted electronic data”.

The clause would not include the phrase,

“the judge has reasonable grounds for believing”,

includes excepted data. That may sound as if I am dancing on the head of a pin but I think it is quite an important issue. In Committee I explained that I was seeking a formula that was objective. The Minister responded by referring to the phrase “reasonable grounds” being used elsewhere in the Bill. Indeed, the clauses that she mentioned, Clauses 1 and 7, include that phrase but they are not about an order; they are about the basis for making an application, which I suggest is a rather different matter.

I accept that, as she said, the contents of data may not be known until they are produced, but without our amendment, or some such amendment, the judge could make an order that it later turned out did include excepted data. I was looking for an objectively based exception because how otherwise do you appeal? Would you be appealing against the judge’s reasonableness? That would not be the same as appealing on the basis that the data was excepted. I would find it very uncomfortable to have to appeal against whether or not a judge was reasonable. What really should be at issue is the character of the data, and we are not satisfied that the Bill really addresses that. I beg to move.