Clause 1

Part of Freedom of Information (Amendment) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:45 am on 7th February 2007.

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Photo of George Howarth George Howarth Labour, Knowsley North and Sefton East 10:45 am, 7th February 2007

Indeed. As my hon. Friend says, gangsters do not observe any kind of due process. Once they have made up their mind, violence takes over. Members who have experience of Northern Ireland will be familiar with that phenomenon. Although gangsters do not believe in due process, they are quite capable of working out who might be the source of that information and they act accordingly, and often violently. People facing such circumstances have a right to expect their Member of Parliament to pass information on without mentioning them, and to expect that that information will be protected so that those against whom it is used will not be in a position to put two and two together and make four or five. That is a hugely important principle to which every hon. Member should adhere. With those few observations, which I hope are helpful, I commend the right hon. Gentleman on this initiative.