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

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 5:00 pm on 3rd December 2018.

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Photo of Lord Rosser Lord Rosser Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs), Shadow Spokesperson (Transport) 5:00 pm, 3rd December 2018

I am obviously disappointed by the Government’s response, although it would be wrong of me to suggest that I am entirely surprised by it, since they have defended the position stoutly ever since we started discussing it. I probably do the noble Earl a disservice, but it seems to me that the Government’s argument is that we have made this error eight times and now we are going to make it a ninth, because apparently it is too big a problem to rectify the previous eight.

I do not intend to push this to a vote, but I will conclude by saying once again that surely we need legislation to be clear not just to lawyers but to all. I think somebody who reads this will not put the interpretation on it that they have to turn to another piece of legislation to find out that what new Section 58B says is not meant but that there was another intention and that the burden of proof in reality rests with the prosecution. I shall not pursue the matter any further. I am just sorry that the Government have not been prepared to take the bull by the horns and rectify it on this occasion—even if it means rectifying it in relation to the other eight instances at the same time. I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment 10 withdrawn.