Clause 3 - Arrest under certified Part 1 warrant

Part of Extradition Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 2:45 pm on 9th January 2003.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Bob Ainsworth Bob Ainsworth The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department 2:45 pm, 9th January 2003

Constables, Customs officers and members of service police authorities are the only sort of people who we foresee in the role. We are talking not about the negative procedure, about which hon. Members became so exercised on another clause; we are talking about the affirmative procedure whereby the order will come before both Houses of Parliament for the approval of any extension beyond a constable. That gives people an understanding of the control that Parliament still has over any extension of the powers of arrest under the European arrest warrant. The Liberal Democrat amendment would go even further, and would limit the power of arrest of the EAW to a police constable—end of story. In the scenario that we have just considered, a Customs officer who came across someone subject to an EAW could take no action other than to inform the police of the whereabouts of the person, and in some circumstances would watch them sailing out of sight and beyond the reach of any action.

If we were to delete subsection (2)(c), as the amendment seeks to do, a constable would have to have a copy of the arrest warrant in his possession in order to effect an arrest. Overwhelmingly, arrest warrants are going to be effected proactively.