TRAFFICKING IN HUMAN ORGANS AND TISSUES
Letter from the Chairman to Mr Bob Ainsworth
MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Home Office
Thank you for your detailed Explanatory Memorandum
of 13 March. It was most helpful for Sub-Committee E (Law and
Institutions) in its examination of the proposal on 2 April. The
Committee welcomes the attempt to extend the EU legal framework
aimed at combating the scourge of trafficking in human beings
and notes that the proposal raises a number of important ethical,
social and public health issues. We have, however, a number of
There are, as you point out, a number of drafting
problems in the instrument. The Committee notes that the drafting
is currently being revisited by the Greek Presidency.
The Committee shares your concerns regarding
the inclusion of donors in the scope of the proposal. Article
2(b) is presumably aimed at combating the sale of human organs
for profit. As the meaning of "promise of financial consideration"
is not clear, however, the provision may lead to the broad criminalisation
of organ donation (with heavy penalties if the removal caused
serious physical harm or has placed the person's life in danger).
The wording needs to be tightened.
Liability of legal persons
Problems with implementing these provisions
have also been highlighted in the context of other proposalssuch
as the draft Framework Decision on racism and xenophobia. We note
the solution which is proposed by the Department of Health in
this specific context. Could the "responsible person"
formula constitute a general model for implementing the liability
of legal persons provisions of all Third Pillar instruments?
As you note in your EM, the jurisdiction provisions
in Article 7 are very wide. Is this acceptable to the Government?
We would welcome your comments on these points.
We understand that a revised version of the proposal will soon
be deposited for scrutiny and would be content for your comments
on the above to be incorporated in the Explanatory Memorandum
accompanying the new draft.
The Committee decided to clear the documents
3 April 2003