Clause 346 - Disclosure orders

Part of Proceeds of Crime Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:45 pm on 29 January 2002.

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Photo of Dominic Grieve Dominic Grieve Shadow Minister (Home Affairs) 4:45, 29 January 2002

I agree with the hon. Lady. As there is a requirement, the offence would be committed immediately. That is extremely undesirable. This situation has not been focused on, and I wonder whether it was focused on in the Northern Ireland legislation.

I am tempted to press the amendment to a vote, but for once, I am prepared to give the Minister the benefit of the doubt. However, I would like a reply that sets out the full position before Report, because I shall undoubtedly return to it then, time permitting—heaven knows, we are going to be pretty pressed for time on Report, depending on how many days the Government allocate.

I do not have all the facts. The Minister may have facts with which he can persuade me so, unusually, I shall not press the amendment. However, there is an important issue here, because apart from anything else, magic words appear on the front of the Bill about conformity with the European convention on human rights. I cannot help thinking that this little bit of the Bill may not conform. Even if we retain the provision, it might not be to the Government's advantage. Northern Ireland legislation is riddled with examples of the Human Rights Act 1998 and the convention being gently sidelined.