Skip to main content

Divisions 84 and 85 - Detention without charge

Division 85 (also the link) is the division for inserting 28 days.
Division 84 is the division for not inserting 90 days (see ante for reasoning).

The Birmingham Mail editorial last night made the key point that Tony Blair had not won the argument.

The underlying issue is complex and as often tends to happen the key legal issues got completely lost. After arrest there are two processes charging a suspect and then remanding in custody. Any constraints on reinterview exist only in the PACE* code and not in primary or secondary legislation.

It, therefore, rests entirely within the control of the executive (the government) to change the guidance to allow terrorist suspects to be charged quickly and remanded into custody. This would get around the difficulties that would be caused by long periods of detention without charge. Let me emphasise that the issue of detention without charge is key. This is not a matter of there not being a trial, but a matter of there being no proper identification of what people are alleged to have done. It is the absence of a charge that makes the government's proposal equivalent to Internment.

My most worrying concern about this was that senior police officers were instructed to lobby MPs. This was not a matter where the police officers were doing what they thought was right, but they were doing what they were told to do. I talk frequently to the West Midlands Police Federation and senior officers and am told what they think about things. I understand, however, that there was lobbying going on via instruction.

Over to an analysis of the divisions:
One tory MP rebelled on the 90 vote and 2 on the 28 vote. 49 Labour MPs rebelled on the 90 amendment and 51 on the 28 amendment. All 62 Lib Dem MPs voted the same way on both amendments. A further 13 Labour MPs abstained on the 28 amendment. George Galloway did turn up this time. The DUP voted with the oppposition and the UU with the government. All SDLP MPs voted with the opposition (from the government benches) all the Nationalists turned up and voted with the opposition.

At the time of writing there is not expected to be a division on the third reading of the bill.

The irony of the whole matter is that next Wednesday there will be a debate about how Tony Blair is being soft on terrorists by allowing people "on the run" to avoid going to court, whilst their victims may have to. He can have it one way or another, but not both ways.

(*PACE - Police and Criminal Evidence Act.)


Popular posts from this blog

Statement re false allegations from Esther Baker

Statement by John Hemming
I am pleased that the Police have now made it clear that there has been a concerted effort to promote false criminal allegations against me and that the allegations had no substance whatsoever.
I would like to thank Emily Cox, my children, Ayaz Iqbal (my Solicitor), my local lib dem team and many others who supported me through this dreadful experience. There are many worse things that happen to people, but this was a really bad experience.
It is bad enough to have false allegations made about yourself to the police, but to have a concerted campaign involving your political opponents and many others in public creates an environment in which it is reasonable to be concerned about ill founded vigilante attacks on your family and yourself. Luckily there was a more substantial lobby to the contrary as well, which included many people who were themselves real survivors of abuse, which has helped.
I am normally someone who helps other people fight injustice. …

Homelessness vs Selling Books

Candidates in elections tend to find themselves very busy with lots of things to do.  It is, therefore, necessary to prioritise things to ensure that the important things are dealt with.

To me the issue of homelessness and rough sleeping is an important issue.  Therefore, when Birmingham's Faith Leaders group contacted me to ask me what I would propose and whether I would work with them to make things better I was pleased to respond with my views and indicate that I would work with them after the election.

The Faith Leaders Group (Bishops and other religious leaders in Birmingham) have now sent out their report.

Sadly, according to their report,  I was the only candidate for Yardley to respond.  The group in their report said:

"Particularly disappointing was the lack of response from some of those candidates seeking re-election as MP for their respective constituencies."
It is worth looking at the priorities of my opponent.
Interestingly today she has decided to be at th…

Millionaires and politics

The Labour Party spent most of the last election criticising me for being a successful businessman (aka millionaire). That is business in the private sector employing over 250 people. It is worth looking at the situation for the Labour Candidate now:

For the year 2016-7 Annual Income from Parliament74,962Specifically for her book51,250Other media income etc5,322.82Total declared income131,534.82

Traditionally anyone with an annual income of over £100,000 has been considered to be a millionaire. I did not use my position in parliament to increase my income.

I have been asked for sources for this. This BBC piece looks at how one should define rich. It was written in 2011 so the figures will be slightly out of date. There are perhaps 2 relevant pieces:
"In 1880 a rich person would have had £100,000 in assets or an income of £10,000 a year, he says. About a hundred people a year died leaving £100,000 and by 1910 this was 250 - "a microscopic fraction of the number of death…