HC Deb 18 July 1977 vol 935 cc1144-5
35. Mr. Canavan

asked the Attorney-General when he next expects to meet the Director of Public Prosecutions.

The Attorney-General (Mr. S. C. Silkin)


Mr. Canavan

Will my right hon. and learned Friend discuss with the Director of Public Prosecutions whether he should be given powers to prosecute the Grunwick director who, on 21st June, drove his bus into the factory in such a reckless manner as to endanger the lives of pickets, policemen and Members of Parliament, in addition to powers to prosecute Grunwick for failing to submit financial returns under the Companies Act?

The Attorney-General

As I informed my hon. Friend in a Written Answer to an earlier Question, the matter is one for the police. It would be wrong for me or the Director to intervene. The second part of my hon. Friend's supplementary question concerns a matter which is one for the Department of Trade. Again, it would be wrong for either of us to intervene.

Mr. Adley

Will the right hon. and learned Gentleman discuss with the DPP the position of people who skip bail and seek so-called asylum in East European Communist countries? Perhaps the Director could reach an arrangement whereby, if such people promise not to come back, he will drop all charges against them.

The Attorney-General

I have quite enough to discuss with the Director without going into those matters.

Mr. Watkinson

Does my right hon. and learned Friend agree that there is a great deal of public ignorance about the role of the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions? Will he confirm that this office will be a subject matter of the Royal Commission's inquiry? Will my right hon. and learned Friend also say whether he thinks that it would be useful if he could define his own relationship with the Director, especially on matters of prosecution?

The Attorney-General

The powers of the Director and no doubt those of the Law Officers in these matters will be an aspect to which the new Royal Commission will be giving its attention. Another aspect will be the procedures operated by prosecuting solicitors, chief constables and the Director in relation to prosecutions.

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