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Terrorism Prevention and Investigation Measures

Volume 571: debated on Monday 2 December 2013

TPIMs provide some of the most restrictive measures available in the democratic world and, unlike control orders, they have been consistently upheld by the courts. The Security Service and police believe they have been effective in reducing the threat posed by TPIM subjects, and the Government have made it clear to the police and Security Service that every available power under TPIMs should be used to its fullest possible extent.

In the last year under the Homes Secretary’s scheme, Ibrahim Magag and Mohammed Ahmed Mohamed have absconded. Does she have any idea where either man is, and will she confirm that, contrary to what she said last time she was in the House, she has no idea where Mr Mohamed’s passport is?

I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman for giving me the opportunity to make verbally the amendment I made in Hansard. In my statement to the House about Mr Mohamed, I told the right hon. Member for Leicester East (Keith Vaz), the Chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee, that I thought the police had his passport. I wrote to him afterwards explaining that that information was incorrect. The police did not have his passport, because when he returned to the UK, he was not in possession of a passport and therefore it was not possible to remove it from him.

The Home Secretary’s weak TPIMs regime reaches a milestone on 26 January 2014, when seven out of the eight TPIM orders expire and cannot be renewed. This includes the TPIM governing AY, who is believed to be a key member of the group behind attempts to blow up transatlantic flights with liquid bombs and who travelled to Pakistan to learn bomb making, and AM, who was involved in the same plot. Lord Justice Wilkie concluded that he was “highly intelligent” and

“prepared to be a martyr in an attack designed to take many lives.”

Will she explain why these individuals will be freed from all restrictions by the end of January 2014?

The hon. Lady is aware of the legislation, as is everybody else, but I take issue with her description of TPIMs. As she will have heard me say in answer to her hon. Friend the Member for Cardiff West (Kevin Brennan), TPIMs provide some of the most restrictive measures available in the democratic world. The independent reviewer of terrorism legislation stated:

“In terms of security, the TPIM regime continues to provide a high degree of protection against untriable and undeportable persons who are judged on substantial grounds to be dangerous terrorists,”.

The hon. Lady talks about people coming off TPIMs as if no one had ever come off a control order. In fact, 43 people came off control orders because the previous Government revoked them because they were quashed in court, or in six cases because people absconded and were never seen again.