New Clause 8

Serious Crime Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 11:30 am on 10 July 2007.

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Institution of proceedings for an offence under this Part

‘(1) Any provision to which this section applies has effect with respect to an offence under this Part as it has effect with respect to the anticipated offence.

(2) This section applies to provisions made by or under an enactment (whenever passed or made) that—

(a) provide that proceedings may not be instituted or carried on otherwise than by, or on behalf or with the consent of, any person (including any provision which also makes exceptions to the prohibition);

(b) confer power to institute proceedings;

(c) confer power to seize and detain property;

(d) confer a power of forfeiture, including any power to deal with anything liable to be forfeited.

(3) In relation to an offence under section 43—

(a) the reference in subsection (1) to the anticipated offence is to be read as a reference to any offence specified in the indictment; and

(b) each of the offences specified in the indictment must be an offence in respect of which the prosecutor has power to institute proceedings.

(4) Any consent to proceedings required as a result of this section is in addition to any consent required by section 50.’.—[Maria Eagle.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

Photo of Maria Eagle Maria Eagle The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

I beg to move, That the clause be read a Second time.

The new clause ensures that the powers that apply to a substantive offence would also apply to an offence of encouraging or assisting that offence. It is entirely sensible and one of the main purposes of the entire reform of the criminal law that part 2 represents that this be the case. There is already similar provision in section 2 of the Criminal Attempts Act 1981 to ensure that powers applying to substantive offences also apply to attempts. Therefore, there is nothing out of order here; it is simply joining up the system. On that basis, I hope that the Committee will be able to accept the new clause.

Photo of James Brokenshire James Brokenshire Shadow Minister (Home Affairs)

The Minister has explained that this is a question of consistency. The new clause ensures that the amendment to inchoate offences as proposed by the Law Commission is effective and holds together as intended. On that basis, we will not oppose new clause 8.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause read a Second time, and added to the Bill.