Results 121–140 of 15000 for speaker:Bob Neill OR speaker:Bob Neill

Attorney General: Financial Crime (10 Feb 2022)

Bob Neill: Might I say, Mr Speaker, that the Law Officers are entitled to perhaps a good half an hour of the House’s time as well? The Solicitor General probably has more experience of prosecuting serious fraud hands on than anyone else in this House. From my own experience at the Bar, I know he is right when he says that fraud is not a victimless crime. Does he agree that we need a joined-up approach...

Local Government Finance (England) (9 Feb 2022)

Bob Neill: I fear that, in local government terms, I am perhaps in the same vintage as the right hon. Member for Knowsley (Sir George Howarth) and have perhaps also experienced the Palmerston effect over my years in local government finance. Since I was elected to Havering Council in 1974—as a very young man, I might add—the nature of the finance settlement has changed and things have come and...

Justice: UK’s Human Rights Framework (8 Feb 2022)

Bob Neill: I am grateful that my right hon. Friend made reference to the independent review of the Human Rights Act. I am sure he would want to join me in thanking the right hon. Sir Peter Gross, the chair of that review, and his colleagues for their exceptionally hard and diligent work in this regard. Sir Peter gave evidence to the Justice Committee last week. He pointed out that while the Government...

Levelling Up (2 Feb 2022)

Bob Neill: I refer the House to my entry in the Register of Members’ Financial Interests. Following this excellent document and having recognised the value of cultural investment, will my right hon. Friend meet me to discuss some of the exciting ways in which some of our major arts organisations, including those based in London, are prepared to participate in the levelling up throughout the whole country?

Judicial Review and Courts Bill: Schedule 5 - Employment tribunal procedure rules: further provision (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: I have great respect for the hon. Member for Stockton North (Alex Cunningham), but I am afraid I have to disagree with his characterisation of the Bill. It makes modest reforms, which seem sensible. Although I accept that the changes to judicial review are not uncontroversial, they are not a wholesale attack. I would not support them if they were. It is important to recognise that judicial...

Judicial Review and Courts Bill: New Clause 1 - Maximum term of imprisonment on summary conviction for either-way offence (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: My hon. Friend makes an important point about the youth courts. Does he agree that it is often not appreciated that the youth courts deal with very serious matters which, if they involved adult offenders, would undoubtedly go to the Crown court, and that requires not only the best possible lawyers, but the most experienced and diverse magistracy available to deal with those important cases,...

Judicial Review and Courts Bill: New Clause 1 - Maximum term of imprisonment on summary conviction for either-way offence (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: I understand the spirit in which the shadow Minister makes that point. He will know that the Justice Committee has said on a number of occasions that we cannot get justice on the cheap. I accept that we cannot write blank cheques, but the fact is that the proportion of total public spending that goes on the court system is a fraction of a fraction. We get justice for a very small amount of...

Judicial Review and Courts Bill: New Clause 1 - Maximum term of imprisonment on summary conviction for either-way offence (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: I know we are straying towards the edge of the topic, Madam Deputy Speaker, but I think this is germane, because to make these reforms to the court system work, we have to invest in the professionals who operate in it. I welcome Sir Christopher’s report; it is immensely well researched and immensely well written. The truth is that within the uplift in the Department’s funding, there is...

Judicial Review and Courts Bill: New Clause 1 - Maximum term of imprisonment on summary conviction for either-way offence (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: All in all, this is a valuable Bill and I welcome the Government amendments. I practised criminal law for the better part of 30 years before I came into the House—in both magistrates courts as a younger barrister and then predominantly in the Crown court, both prosecuting and defending. It never seemed logical that the legislative provision introduced by the Labour Government in 2003 had...

Judicial Review and Courts Bill: New Clause 1 - Maximum term of imprisonment on summary conviction for either-way offence (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: I salute my hon. Friend’s work as a magistrate over many years. What he says is absolutely true, and the Justice Committee report picked the point up at the time. When I practised in parts of east and central London, magistrates benches used to have a very high number of what we would now term blue collar workers—frequently trade union officials and public sector workers. They were given...

Judicial Review and Courts Bill: New Clause 1 - Maximum term of imprisonment on summary conviction for either-way offence (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: I agree with my hon. Friend and recognise his experience in the field. I do not think this needs to be framed as a backlog-reducing measure. There is merit in the measure in its own right, as there was in 2003 when the Labour Government introduced it. With all due respect to the Minister, it does a bit of disservice to the measure to say it is done to reduce the backlog, and that it can be...

Judicial Review and Courts Bill: New Clause 1 - Maximum term of imprisonment on summary conviction for either-way offence (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: That is entirely true. We know that there is sometimes a struggle to get sufficient magistrates to sit in the family jurisdiction. They are absolutely crucial. There is a separate piece of work that needs to be done, so that, as with early legal advice, informed decisions and choices are made. That applies in the magistrates court in the criminal jurisdiction and also to decisions that have...

Judicial Review and Courts Bill: New Clause 1 - Maximum term of imprisonment on summary conviction for either-way offence (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: I, too, support this amendment. My hon. Friend will remember, or will perhaps know, that the Justice Committee has raised this in the past when we did an inquiry in relation to magistrates. A concern was raised by his predecessor that this might have an impact on the levels of those going into custody, but we were never able to find any evidence to support that. It seemed, essentially,...

Written Answers — Department for Transport: Large Goods Vehicle Drivers: Training (25 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking to make it easier for people in receipt of benefits to train as HGV drivers.

Written Answers — Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities: Question (24 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what steps his Department is taking to support people affected by a rise in insurance premiums as a result of living in buildings with unsafe cladding.

Mental Health Act 1983: Detention of People with Autism and other Lifelong Conditions (20 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: I am grateful to my right hon. and learned Friend for giving way, and for the passion and knowledge that he brings to this topic. He refers to out-of-date legislation and how things have moved on. He will know from his experience as Justice Secretary that if we thought that we were applying the same regimes in terms of detention and use of restraint to people who had been convicted of...

Lawfare and UK Court System (20 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: indicated assent.

Lawfare and UK Court System (20 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: Thank you very much, Mr Deputy Speaker. I promise that in my brief remarks I will endeavour not to do so. I am grateful to my right hon. Friend the Member for Haltemprice and Howden (Mr Davis) for securing this important debate and congratulate him on doing so. This is a significant topic, one with constitutional importance. I wish to confine most of my remarks to the position of the legal...

Lawfare and UK Court System (20 Jan 2022)

Bob Neill: Let us be very clear: there are very significant regulations relating to the conduct of law firms in the United Kingdom. There are two separate regulatory regimes. Very properly, there are much greater checks in place on money laundering and source of funds for the solicitors profession, which handles client money, than for the Bar, which does not; it acts on the instructions that come via...


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