Clause 254 - Supervision of interim receiver

Proceeds of Crime Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 12:15 pm on 18 December 2001.

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[Mr. Stephen McCabe in the Chair]

Photo of Dominic Grieve Dominic Grieve Shadow Minister (Home Affairs)

I beg to move amendment No. 350, in page 148, line 43, leave out 'interested in' and insert 'affected by'.

The clause provides for the supervision of the interim receiver and variations of orders. Subsection (3) states:

''The court may at any time vary or set aside an interim receiving order.''

However, subsection (4) states:

''Before doing so, the court must (as well as giving the respondent and any other party to the proceedings an opportunity to be heard) give such an opportunity to the interim receiver and to any person who may be interested in the court's decision.''

The amendment would delete the words ''interested in'' and replace them with the words ''affected by''.

The amendment is probing. I want clarification from the Minister on what category of person would be considered interested in the decision. If the amendment were made, how would that change the situation? I want clarification on the category of individuals who could intervene in proceedings and ask to be heard.

The matter is important because it is essential that any person who is likely to be adversely affected should have the opportunity to be heard, which is why I prefer the term that I proposed in the amendment. However, if the Minister gives me reassurance, I will accept that the terms may be equivalent.

Photo of Bob Ainsworth Bob Ainsworth The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department

Thank you, Mr. McCabe, for standing in for Mr. McWilliam.[Mr. John McWilliam in the Chair]

[Mr. John McWilliam in the Chair]

A small part of the hon. Gentleman's speech really annoyed me, or, at least, it will if he pursues it. He said that we are considering a probing amendment. Last week, he complained that, in all his years as a Member of Parliament, he had never heard a Minister stand up and say that he accepted an amendment. He said that that does not happen.

I accept the amendment. If the hon. Gentleman insists on an explanation, he is obviously right that his wording is better. The only caveat is that there is a need for a consequent change with regard to Scotland. If the hon. Gentleman agrees, I will not pursue him down the road of probing, but simply introduce that requirement, in order to bring the Scottish provisions in line with the Grieve double star XO amendment.

Photo of Dominic Grieve Dominic Grieve Shadow Minister (Home Affairs)

The Minister has made my Christmas. I am delighted that he thinks that ''affected by'' is a better wording. I think that it is, as I explained previously.

Photo of Bob Ainsworth Bob Ainsworth The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department

There is no more to be said.

Amendment agreed to.

Clause 254, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.