Double Jeopardy (Scotland) Bill: Stage 3

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 22nd March 2011.

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Photo of James Kelly James Kelly Labour

I support the Government amendments.

Disclosure is an important aspect of legal proceedings, and it is a fundamental right of the accused and their legal team that they have sight of the evidence against them.

The cabinet secretary was correct to lodge the amendments in order to make the disclosure regime in relation to double jeopardy consistent with other aspects of the criminal law. We would not want a situation in which the common law applied to what will be a very few—indeed, exceptional—serious cases.

Although it is quite unusual for an order-making power to be introduced at stage 3, I recognise that it is a precaution and that it will ensure that the appropriate transitional arrangements can be made in relation to disclosure.