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Lord McNally: My Lords, as the Minister gathers his brief, I hope that he will respond with an open mind. As the Bill progresses, I have a growing suspicion that we may be finding some of the solutions to soccer hooliganism. But the Government will not regard as key parts of the Bill some of the solutions which will work.

I suspect that hooliganism will be weaned away from soccer not by the policeman exercising these powers at the points of departure but by a range of measures instituted by clubs and others. I agree with the noble Viscount's point that soccer hooliganism has lacked any kind of "truth and consequence". Individuals go away and cause mayhem and no one is ever prosecuted. The Minister needs to consider how to establish truth and consequence both at home and abroad. The Minister describes the powers that he wants to give police at the points of departure as preventive. I am not so sure that they will be as preventive as the Government hope. When hooligans see their friends being prosecuted, convicted and paying a price for soccer hooliganism, that will be the real deterrent. The Minister should devote his attention to that aspect. That is why I hope that his response indicates an openness of mind.

Lord Bassam of Brighton: My Lords, I shall try to be as encouraging as I can. It was an interesting debate last night. Perhaps it was the lateness of the hour which made me sound more negative than I did when we discussed the issue at Second Reading.

I thought that I had made plain the problems with extra-territorial jurisdiction. The views expressed by the noble and learned Lord, Lord Donaldson, were telling. It remains the case that extra-territorial jurisdiction exists in only fairly limited circumstances--murder, certain serious sex crimes, and piracy, which I think was mentioned during the debate. It is fairly constrained territory.

I am quite attracted to the amendment. It has had some currency with debate within the Home Office and with the football authorities. It has the benefit of

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convenience in the sense that perhaps it will add greater certainty to outcome. I recognise the strength of the noble Lord's argument on that point. There are problems. Burdens and standards of proof, transportation of evidence and witnesses, the less easy transposition of like offences, and so on, would be real difficulties.

There is another difficulty. The extra-territorial jurisdiction procedure would relate to criminal offences and therefore to criminal law and procedures. That is an important point. That would mean that retrospective evidence would be excluded from such proceedings. We believe that one of the strengths of new Section 14B(2) is that it is a civil and not a criminal proceeding. That means that the use of retrospective evidence is far more easily squared with the European Convention on Human Rights.

Finally, extra-territorial jurisdiction in our view could never constitute a strategy against football hooliganism. The noble Lord, Lord Phillips, saw it almost as the answer when he passionately put forward his argument. We believe that we need these proactive and preventive powers to try to stop likely troublemakers from travelling overseas in the first instance. I think that we are right to push for that. Punishing them afterwards will, for us, always be a second best option. In politics one should never say "never". This particular amendment falls carefully into that category.

I suggest to the noble Lord that he withdraws his amendment on the basis of an undertaking that we shall bring back a report on the discussion of the first sunset clause so that we can consider what merit and value there is in extra-territorial jurisdiction. I believe that it will be one year for the first period of the sunset clause. Then some further consideration can be given to this matter with a view perhaps to considering legislation at some later date when the opportunity arises.

I recognise that that is perhaps not what the noble Lord wants and that that undertaking is not as firm and crisp as he would like. We have a measure of interest and sympathy with the direction of the amendment. It may well be part of a wider armoury of measures which we need to consider.

The noble Viscount, Lord Astor, quite properly asked what we were doing to encourage prosecutions abroad. When I visited the mayors and police chiefs of Charleroi and Eindhoven, I was pretty fulsome in my encouragement that they should adopt a zero or a low-tolerance approach and back that up by using their courts to prosecute those apprehended during the course of the Euro 2000 tournament. They gave me their assurances that they would, as they always do in such circumstances. We had a very happy signing ceremony of protocols where it was agreed that that would take place.

The Belgian authorities chose to use the exportation route. Because the offence for which arrests were made was "administrative", to use their own description, no prosecutions are likely to ensue except in the few and limited cases which have been widely discussed in the

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British press and to which much reference has been made. That is a great disappointment. I believe that it would be better for justice to be done, and be seen to be done, across Europe when instances of hooliganism take place. That would send a very loud and powerful message and make the hooligans extremely uncomfortable about being prosecuted in another jurisdiction and having to put up with all the inconvenience and unpleasantness that that sometimes brings. We as a Government are keen to work closely with our European partners to encourage them to make full use of their powers within their own jurisdiction where there are similar offences and where persons have been arrested for acts that constitute hooliganism.

I invite the noble Lord to withdraw his amendment. I hope that he will treat my comments as encouraging, sympathetic and practical because that is how I intend them. I trust that the amendment will be withdrawn.

6 p.m.

Lord Phillips of Sudbury: My Lords, I am grateful for the Minister's response. There is a slight problem in that there were five questions addressed specifically to me. Perhaps I may give one-sentence replies. The noble Lord, Lord Desai, asked whether their would be double jeopardy. I think not. He asked about British citizens abroad. They would be within the Bill, but it is highly unlikely that we would bother about them. The noble Viscount, Lord Astor, asked about Belgian tourists here. They would not come within the territoriality provisions. The objection of the noble and learned Lord, Lord Lloyd, is covered by subsection (3) of the amendment. As regards the misgivings in principle of the noble and learned Lord, Lord Donaldson, we did not know what his views were after I had endeavoured to persuade him that there was no problem. He did not speak after that.

I am not worried about the trend towards extra-territoriality because the circumstances warranting that will be few and far between. I believe that the rationale of traditional extra-territoriality will be found consonant with this proposal.

As regards encouraging others to deal with our hooligans, I hope that at least the noble Lord, Lord Bassam, got a good lunch out of his protocol signing because he got very little else. I fear that that is how it is going to be. Finally, his "problem" as he put it, of the burden and the standards of proof is precisely why we are keen on this amendment. It overcomes the problem which for us is that the burden and standard of proof under the Bill is not as we would have it.

Having said that, I am grateful for the Minister's comments which were constructive. I accept that such a major incision into the Bill now is problematic. I like to believe that mature consideration will lead to the Government wanting to introduce an amendment such as this fairly soon. I am happy to beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

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Clause 3 [Supplementary]:

Lord Bach moved Amendment No. 5:


Page 2, line 19, after ("Act") insert ("or affirmative instrument")

The noble Lord said: My Lords, on behalf of my noble friend I move this amendment and speak to government Amendment No. 6. Perhaps I may also speak to Amendment No. 7 in the name of the noble Lord, Lord Campbell of Alloway. I can be brief as regards Amendments Nos. 5 and 6. They fulfil the Government's intention as regards Clause 3 of the Bill in complying with the recommendation of the Select Committee's report on the delegated powers.

The considerations are explained eloquently in the Select Committee's report, which I am sure noble Lords will have read. Therefore, I simply commend the amendment to your Lordships. I shall speak briefly to the noble Lord's amendment. It would make all orders made under Clause 3 of the Bill subject to the affirmative resolution procedure, even those amending orders which themselves were subject only to the negative resolution procedure.

Perhaps I may attempt to assist the House by emphasising the limited nature of the power to make amendments under Clause 3(1) of the Bill. The suggestion that it gives the Government complete authority to make any changes that they wish in the Bill is unfounded. The power is limited to supplementary, incidental, consequential, transitory, transitional or saving provisions. I have undertaken to advise the noble Lord, Lord Lucas, on the arcane legal thinking underlying the difference between transitory and transitional. I said yesterday that I would do that as soon as possible. However, in the time available to me this morning, I have been unable to do the necessary research. The important point is that we accept that any amendments to primary legislation must be subject to the affirmative resolution procedure. That is already provided for by Clause 3(4) of the Bill.

I have now brought forward an amendment which fully complies with the recommendation of the Delegated Powers and Deregulation Committee on the point now that we have been able to ensure that it poses no obstacle, as it was feared it might, to the availability of legal advice and assistance to those who may need it. Therefore, I suggest to the noble Lord who is a great expert in this field, that his amendment would not necessarily improve the Bill. I ask him to consider not moving it.


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