Skip to main content

Leaving the EU: Devolved Administrations and Prosecutions

Volume 616: debated on Thursday 27 October 2016

3. What discussions he has had with devolved Administrations on the potential effect of the UK leaving the EU on the ability to prosecute criminals. (906825)

The Crown Prosecution Service and the Serious Fraud Office regularly engage with Scotland’s prosecution service and the Public Prosecution Service for Northern Ireland. The Government recognise the importance of retaining good co-operation with European countries on prosecutions, and will continue to engage with the devolved Administrations to seek the best arrangements possible on leaving the EU.

Post Brexit, will the Government seek to continue to use the European arrest warrant? If not, what will they put in its place?

As the hon. Gentleman will anticipate, I am not going to prejudge the outcome of the negotiations and discussions we will have. It is of course right that the European arrest warrant and other measures like it are of huge benefit not just to this country but to our European partners as well. For that reason I am optimistic that we will be able to put in place measures that benefit both sides.

Once we are freed from the freedom of movement rules, will the Crown Prosecution Service seek to prosecute EU nationals who commit crimes in this country and to ban them from returning to this country, which we are not able to do at the moment?

My hon. Friend will know that at the moment the CPS does indeed prosecute European nationals who commit crimes in this country. Some of the measures I have just described are of assistance not just in returning those individuals to be tried in this country but in gaining the evidence necessary to secure their conviction. As for the measures taken thereafter, sentencing decisions are of course for the courts. We will look carefully at what other measures might become available to the courts once we have left the European Union.