Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Bill - Committee (1st Day)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 7:15 pm on 29th October 2018.

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Photo of Lord Paddick Lord Paddick Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Home Affairs) 7:15 pm, 29th October 2018

My Lords, clearly all the amendments in this group have their merits, but we seem to be rallying to the flag of the noble Lord, Lord Anderson of Ipswich, for very good reason. As the noble and learned Lord, Lord Judge, explained, this appears to be, at least in essence, the way forward. As the noble Lord, Lord Anderson, said, it is based on a tried-and-tested system that operates under Australian law and gives a degree of certainty that the reasonable excuse defence does not give. It covers journalism as well, which could arguably make Amendment 20 unnecessary. On the definition of what journalism means, the noble Lord’s expression,

“working in a professional capacity as a journalist”,

might be an indication of the way forward as far as that definition is concerned. I have added my name to Amendments 21 and 22 in my noble friend Lady Hamwee’s name, but, as I said, perhaps Amendment 17 is a better way forward.

The noble Lord, Lord Faulks, is obviously trailing his amendment on treason, but in addition to what the noble Baroness, Lady Manningham-Buller, said, it is more than just fighting UK forces. It could be that people are going to engage in terrorist activity against allies of the UK, not necessarily against the UK itself. We would want to deter our nationals from travelling to areas for that purpose. People might travel to those areas for a legitimate purpose and then engage in terrorist activity, but there is no way that we could legislate for that. Clearly, they would then commit a substantive offence under different legislation.