Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011

Home Department written question – answered on 17th October 2011.

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Photo of Sir David Amess Sir David Amess Conservative, Southend West

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment she has made of the operation of section 153 of the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011; and if she will make a statement. [R]

Photo of Crispin Blunt Crispin Blunt Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice) (Prisons and Probation)

I have been asked to reply.

Section 153 of the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011, which came into force on 15 September 2011, requires the consent of the Director of Public Prosecutions to be given before an arrest warrant can be issued in a private prosecution for offences of universal jurisdiction. These are offences—including certain war crimes, torture, and hostage-taking—which can be prosecuted here even if committed outside the UK by someone who is not a British national. The Director of Public Prosecutions is well aware that speed is important in dealing with applications of this kind, and he has made clear that it is open to anyone who wants to pursue a crime of universal jurisdiction to engage with the CPS as early as possible.

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