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25 Mar 2003 : Column 209continued
Mr. Burnett: We are beginning to tease an important point out of the Minister. Many hon. Members would like a clear exposition of what, in the Minister's view, a warrant will contain. Will it spell out the exact offence under legislation in the countries that seek extradition? What else will the warrant include?
Mr. Ainsworth: We discussed that at some length and I talked about the matter again when introducing this group of amendments. I do not know whether the hon. Gentleman has been able to sit through our proceedings this afternoon. The warrant will clearly state that people are sought in order to bring them to trial, give details of the law that has been allegedly broken in the jurisdiction and set out the potential penalty for breaking it. It will not refer to the generic list, which facilitates mutual recognition. The warrant will contain specific allegations. I refer the hon. Gentleman to clause 2(4) and (6). It sets out the exact requirements on the face of the warrant.
There is therefore certainty. The hon. Member for Witney asked what I would say to my constituents. I tell them that when people from another jurisdiction come to our country, they should be subject to our law. The fact that they manage to leave the country should not render them immune to it. However, the reverse applies to our constituents. When they go abroad, they must be prepared to abide by the law of the European country
Mr. Boris Johnson: The Minister gave the hon. Member for Torridge and West Devon (Mr. Burnett) an interesting answer. Surely, in the overwhelming majority of cases, a direct congruence between the offence in the other Community country and that in our law is immediately obvious. There will be genuinely no dual criminality in only a tiny minority of cases. Is it not sensible to leave those cases to the Home Secretary, acting as a longstop and a safeguard?
Mr. Ainsworth: It is true that there is not an exact equivalent of an offence in British law in only a few cases. However, does the hon. Gentleman seriously suggest that that stops people raising the matter in every case and requiring arguments for the exact equivalent in British law? Does he not realise that that is one of the main causes of the delays in our current system?
Mr. Cameron : The style of the European arrest warrant is given on page 47 of the Home Affairs Committee's report, which will tell the hon. Member for Torridge and West Devon (Mr. Burnett) all that he needs to know. It is clear what the warrant will look like. What is less clear is the nature of some of the 32 categories, such as racism and xenophobia. I gave an example involving Finnish warmongering, supplied to the Home Affairs Committee by Home Office officials.
Will the Minister give an undertaking that in years to come the Home Office will give the Home Affairs Committee and the House some guidance on laws in other countries relating to vague categories such as racism and xenophobia, so that we can at least help constituents who may get into trouble as a result of the new procedure?
(1) This section applies if
(a) the appropriate judge makes an order under section 45(6) or 47(3)(a) for a person's extradition to a category 1 territory;
(b) the person is serving a sentence of imprisonment or another form of detention in the United Kingdom.
(2) The judge may make the order for extradition subject to the condition that extradition is not to take place before he receives an undertaking given on behalf of the category 1 territory in terms specified by him.
(3) The terms which may be specified by the judge in relation to a person accused in a category 1 territory of the commission of an offence include terms
(a) that the person be kept in custody until the conclusion of the proceedings against him for the offence and any other offence in respect of which he is permitted to be dealt with in the category 1 territory;
(b) that the person be returned to the United Kingdom to serve the remainder of his sentence on the conclusion of those proceedings.
(4) The terms which may be specified by the judge in relation to a person alleged to be unlawfully at large after conviction of an offence by a court in a category 1 territory include terms that the person be returned to the United Kingdom to serve the remainder of his sentence after serving any sentence imposed on him in the category 1 territory for
(a) the offence, and
(b) any other offence in respect of which he is permitted to be dealt with in the category 1 territory.
(5) If the judge makes an order for extradition subject to a condition under subsection (2) the required period for the purposes of sections 46(2) and 48(2) is 10 days starting with the day on which the judge receives the undertaking.'.
(1) This section applies if
(a) an order is made under section 45(6) or 47(3)(a) for a person to be extradited to a category 1 territory in pursuance of a Part 1 warrant;
(b) before the person is extradited to the territory an order is made under section 43(4)(b) or 179(2)(b) for the person's extradition in pursuance of the warrant to be deferred;
(c) the appropriate judge makes an order under section 181(3)(a) for the person's extradition in pursuance of the warrant to cease to be deferred.
(1) This section applies if at any time in the extradition hearing the judge is informed that the person is charged with an offence in the United Kingdom.
(2) The judge must adjourn the extradition hearing until one of these occurs
(a) the charge is disposed of;
(b) the charge is withdrawn;
(c) proceedings in respect of the charge are discontinued;
(d) an order is made for the charge to lie on the file, or in relation to Scotland, the diet is deserted pro loco et tempore.
(3) If a sentence of imprisonment or another form of detention is imposed in respect of the offence charged, the judge may adjourn the extradition hearing until the sentence has been served.
(4) If before he adjourns the extradition hearing under subsection (2) the judge has decided under section 78 whether the person's extradition is barred by reason of the rule against double jeopardy, the judge must decide that question again after the resumption of the hearing.'.
(1) This section applies if at any time in the extradition hearing the judge is informed that the person is serving a sentence of imprisonment or another form of detention in the United Kingdom.
(2) The judge may adjourn the extradition hearing until the sentence has been served.'.