Clause 3 - Arrest under certified Part 1 warrant

Part of Extradition Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:30 pm on 9th January 2003.

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Photo of Mr John Burnett Mr John Burnett Liberal Democrat, Torridge and West Devon 3:30 pm, 9th January 2003

It may help the Committee if I were to distinguish between amendment No. 130 and the Conservative amendment No. 17. We do not necessarily believe that the warrant should be available at the time of the arrest, but amendment No. 129 makes it clear that the warrant should be in a language that the defendant can understand. Amendment No. 130 provides for the warrant to be shown to the defendant as soon as practicable after the person's arrest. That seems entirely reasonable. It is also reasonable that there should be a translation of it available at that time as not only are these cases extremely sensitive, they are few and far between. The amendment would be in the interests of justice.

The Minister said that legal aid and an interpreter will always be available. I wonder what he would say to us about information to the arrested person about the availability of legal representation, legal aid and interpreters. There must be minimum standards, so we shall divide the Committee on the amendments. I hope that Conservative Members will support the amendments, and I invite Labour Members to vote with us to ensure that the minimum standards of justice are available.

Question put, That the amendment be made:—

The Committee divided: Ayes 3, Noes 9.