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Control Orders

Volume 505: debated on Wednesday 10 February 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make an assessment of whether the restrictions on the law reporting of control order judgements enable counsel and courts to follow precedent effectively; and if he will make a statement. (316657)

[holding answer 9 February 2010]: Where sensitive intelligence material is used in control order proceedings, a closed judgment will normally be handed down by the court. These judgments cannot be made publicly available for public interest reasons. An accompanying open judgment will usually contain the court's findings on legal arguments of principle and is publicly available.

There are working practices which allow for judges and the special advocates appointed to act in the interests of the control person to access closed judgments in other cases where appropriate.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) individuals have been subject to control orders and (b) control orders are in force with a requirement for the controllee to relocate their home; how many such conditions were later rescinded; and if he will make a statement. (316658)

[holding answer 9 February 2010]: Of the 45 individuals ever subject to control orders (including the 12 individuals referred to below), 17 individuals have been required to relocate and three relocations were subsequently overturned by the court.

Of the 12 individuals subject to control orders as of 10 December 2009 (the last date covered by the most recent quarterly written ministerial statement on control orders), eight have been required to, and have, relocated, two relocations were subsequently overturned by the court.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department in respect of the two control orders that were rescinded so as not to disclose the cases on which they were based, for how long each of the controllees was subject to the order before it was rescinded, whether the controllees are (a) UK or (b) foreign nationals and whether the controllees are subject to any other form of restriction; and if he will make a statement. (316659)

[holding answer 9 February 2010]: Two control orders have been revoked and not replaced by new orders as a result of the June 2009 House of Lords judgment in AF & Others ([2009] UKHL 28).

The judgment of Mr. Justice Silber in the case of AE & AF dated 18 January 2010 ([2010] EWHC 42 (Admin)) sets out the timescales for each control order. Both controlees were subject to more than one control order and, where the control order lasted for longer than 12 months, renewals of the control order were made in accordance with the Prevention of Terrorism Act 2005.

As set out in the House of Lords judgment in AF & Others one controlee is an Iraqi national and the other has dual British and Libyan nationality.

The individuals are no longer subject to a control order. We cannot comment on whether they are subject to any other form of restriction.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions he has had with those responsible for law reporting on the implications of the restrictions on reporting of control order judgments and internment orders; and if he will make a statement. (316660)

[holding answer 9 February 2010]: The Secretary of State has not had any discussions on this matter with regard to control orders and is not aware of any taking place. There is no legislation providing for internment orders.

Open control order judgments are reported in the public domain in the same way as any other court judgments, subject to any specific reporting restrictions imposed by the presiding judge. Closed judgments are not made available publicly because they contain sensitive intelligence material which it would not be in the public interest to disclose.

There are working practices which allow for judges and the special advocates appointed to represent the interests of a controlled person to access closed judgments in other cases where appropriate.