Tag Archives: closed material proceedings

Lord McNally writes… Justice and Security Bill: our authentic and liberal efforts

I am the last person to argue that you should never resign from a political party. I resigned from the Labour Party just over thirty years ago. I know it to be an intensely personal and often painful decision. So I pass no judgement on those who have decided to leave the Liberal Democrats because of opposition to the Justice and Security Bill. I think I am entitled to ask, however, what kind of Justice and Security Bill we would now be contemplating if either Labour or the Conservatives had been governing alone?

It seems incoherent to me to resign …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 49 Comments

Ming Campbell MP writes… Why I support the Justice and Security Bill

Supreme Court - Some rights reserved by cphoffman42Last September in Brighton, the Conference voted to remove part 2 of the Justice and Security Bill. That Bill is now completing its final stages in Parliament. But let me assure you, that because of Liberal Democrat pressure, the Bill is now radically different. Amendments have been made such as unfettered discretion for the judge and increased safeguards in order to meet previously raised objections.

The Bill is no longer the one that was before Conference last September and I believe it is now right …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 22 Comments

The Independent View: National security is paramount but ‘secret courts’ are an illiberal attack on British justice

Supreme Court - Some rights reserved by cphoffman42In September 2012, the Liberal Democrat Conference voted overwhelmingly against the most contentious aspect of the government’s Justice and Security Bill – the extension of ‘secret courts’, otherwise known as Closed Material Procedures (CMPs), into civil courts.

This would allow ministers to submit a CMP application to a judge that material relating to national security be withheld from the defendant/claimant and their legal team despite being used as evidence. As Andrew Tyrie MP and Anthony Peto QC explain in “Neither Just nor Secure”, published today by the Centre for Policy Studies, this is worrying because “in an adversarial system such as the English one, the right to know and challenge the opposing case is not merely a feature of the system, it is the system”.

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged , and | 3 Comments

Lord Jim Wallace writes… Secret courts: only where absolutely necessary

Securocrats arguing for increased judicial scrutiny of their actions? Human rights groups praising the collapse of cases brought alleging torture against the Government?

Like me I suspect, you will suspect this is some elaborate joke, or indeed a typographical error.

But in fact these are indeed the seemingly bizarre positions into which these perennial adversaries have put themselves.

In the last few days we have seen some spectacular attempts to redefine the content of the Government’s Justice & Security Bill, casting all sorts of hyperbole and confusion on what should be a cool-headed debate.

The authors of these counsels of despair could do worse …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , and | 3 Comments
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