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Lord Lloyd of Berwick: I would have a great deal of sympathy with the amendment if it provided an alternative to the fast track method proposed by the Government. However, I have a serious problem with it. It seems to me that it would catch foreign football hooligans as well as English and Welsh football hooligans. A Belgian hooligan arriving in this country for a holiday or whatever, could find himself arrested when he next came here and made subject to an English banning order.
The principle which underlies all criminal law is that it is territorial in scope--a point very well put, if I may say so, by the noble Earl, Lord Onslow, in the course of the debate on the previous amendment. There are very few exceptions to that principle. The best known exception is a case of murder; an Englishman who commits a murder abroad can be tried in England for that murder. Apart from that, there are almost no other exceptions that I know of. Clearly football hooliganism--however unattractive--does not fall in the category of murder. The extra territoriality, although ingenious, makes it difficult to see how this can become law.
Lord Lloyd of Berwick: I thought the whole object of this amendment--certainly as drafted--is that it catches acts committed by anyone abroad as if committed in this country. If I am wrong about that, then I am wrong about it. Perhaps the noble Lord can point out where it is confined to British subjects.
Lord Phillips of Sudbury: I cannot put my hand on it immediately, but I think in the Bill there is a provision that it applies only to British citizens. It is certainly my intention that that would be the case. I hope that the point made by the noble and learned Lord is thereby dealt with.
Lord Monson: Although I strongly support nearly all the Liberal Democrat amendments to this Bill, I am afraid that I cannot support this one. Unlike my noble and learned friend, I am not a lawyer, but I have always felt uneasy about the concept of extra-territorial offences. Yes, I suppose there is a case where murder is concerned; there is probably a case where serious sexual offences against children are concerned--I believe my noble friend Lord Hylton had something to do with that--but no one surely can possibly contend that, tiresome though it undoubtedly is, football hooliganism is remotely in the same
The Earl of Onslow: And so I should be, as my noble friend Lord Lucas said. I am very attracted to the amendment because I, too, do not like those disgusting people whose human rights I am attempting to defend. I do not like the way that they behave, but I dislike more the way the Government are attempting to treat them through administrative detention. "We think you might do something naughty. We have no proof. We are going to stop you getting on the aeroplane. You have missed your flight? Bad luck. We are going to lock you up for six days". There is something unpleasant about that. The idea of the noble Lord, Lord Phillips, is a good one. I suspect that one could be charged for piracy extra-territorially, because by its nature piracy must be extra-territorial. I suspect that there are more offences than just murder. I agree also that these are very serious offences.
The concept of extra-territorial legislation, provided it is done within the scope of English laws and English liberties, is extendable. If someone hurls a brick through Fouquets in the Champs-Elysees and is pursued by a very cross gendarme and is seen on television, it is perfectly reasonable that he could be arrested, charged and sentenced here. He has committed a crime. The crime is there. I am not suggesting that the crime should not be punished. I do not like the idea of, "You might do something, so we will stop you". No one is objecting to crime being punished. If it is a problem, and it is obviously perceived to be a problem, the view I take is that it is up to the foreigners to deal with our people if they get stroppy. It is the same if Turks from Galatasaray came over here and behaved badly; we would not say to the Turkish Government that they should keep them away, we would say, "Either you do not come in, or, if you do, we are going to bang you up after due process of trial". It is our problem. If we are worried about the issue, the concept of extra-territorial legislation is an extremely good way out.
Lord Monson: Before the noble Earl sits down, does he agree that if television picked up a picture of an Englishman who had nothing to do with football, hurling a brick against the window of a jeweller's shop in the Champs-Elysees in order to steal the jewellery therein, he should also be tried possibly in this country? Surely there is not much difference between the offences in terms of gravity.
Lord Donaldson of Lymington: That surely is the point. Are we really going to legislate extra-territorially for football offences and not for exactly similar offences which are not connected with football? We had that problem with the War Crimes Bill. It was very odd in my view, and in the view of some who opposed it, that British subjects who committed war crimes abroad should be subject to being pursued, whereas those who were of another nationality--typically, Russian--were not. It did not really make sense.
Perhaps I may apologise to the Committee for not having attended the opening debates on Amendments Nos. 1 and 2. Frankly, it never occurred to me that those matters would be debated under that head because there are so many amendments proposed by the Government, notably the compensation amendments, which appear to me to have a major bearing on whether or not the Bill is acceptable.
In relation to new Section 21A I would just say--I accept that I have not heard the arguments and have apologised for that--that I cannot envisage a police officer standing at an airport check-in point being able, even if he wanted to, arbitrarily to pick people out of the queue and say, "I want to investigate you". Under the terms of the Bill, he has at that moment to have reasonable grounds for suspecting that a condition in new Section 14B(2) has been met. New Section 14B(2) requires that the respondent--I do not think he is a respondent; that is a fudge--
Lord Phillips of Sudbury: I hope that the Committee will not mind if I respond to the noble and learned Lord, Lord Donaldson, on extra-territoriality. He made the point that the provision is targeted at football hooligans and asked why it is not targeted at people who throw bricks through a jeweller's window. The whole of the Bill is targeted at football hooligans. Many of us do not like the fact that we have here a Bill targeted at a single group; but that is how it is. My feeling is that the extension of extra-territoriality to just this group of offences, which is clearly defined, as compared with the disadvantages and, some would say, evil of other aspects of the legislation, is much the lesser of evils.
Lord Lucas: Perhaps I may invite another parallel. Am I not right in thinking that we have legislation against paedophiles travelling to the Far East for holidays with young children? Is it not extraordinary that we do not have anything parallel to this Bill for paedophiles? We cannot stop them at airports. We cannot issue them with banning orders when they have not been convicted of anything. Is that not a much more substantial and horrific offence than anything we are considering under this Bill? If the Bill is right for football hooligans, is it not right for paedophiles?
Viscount Astor: We have sympathy for the amendment of the noble Lord, Lord Phillips. The Minister in another place, Mr Clarke, said that the Bill concerned only citizens of this country and not citizens of any European Union or other country. In the short time available to me, I have not quite discovered where in the Bill that provision may be found. My noble friend can no doubt tell me.
Lord Lucas: New Sections 14A and 14B have no restrictions as to the nationality of anyone; only restrictions as to residence. The restrictions as to nationality occur only in respect of Section 21. Under new Sections 14A and 14B one could bang up a Chinaman if he happened to be living in Leeds.
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