HL Deb 11 May 1906 vol 157 cc28-9


Order of the day for the Second Reading read.


My Lords, the object of this Bill is fully explained in the preamble, which recites that a Convention has been concluded between His Majesty and the President of the United States for including in the list of crimes on account of which extradition may be granted certain offences, and amongst others bribery. The law in this country does not enable us to include bribery among extradition crimes, and this Bill is introduced to give effect to the Convention.

Moved, "That the Bill be now read 2a—(The Lord Chancellor.)


The noble and learned Lord on the Woolsack is quite correct in saying that this Bill is necessary in order to give effect to the Convention entered into between the late Government and the Government of the United States. The latter Government very greatly desired that bribery should become an extraditable offence, and after much negotiation the terms of an arrangement for that purpose were settled.


I think the Bill will require some consideration in Committee. I doubt whether the mere inclusion of the word bribery would effect the purpose.


Under the terms of the Agreement it is made quite clear that the extradition of a fugitive may not be claimed unless the offence which he has committed is an extraditable offence in both countries. Therefore, a person could not be extradited unless the offence committed in the United States was one for which he was liable to criminal punishment under the law of this country.


This Bill was very carefully prepared by the late Lord Chancellor, and I think he is the last person to go wrong on a matter of drafting. But if the noble and learned Lord thinks that an Amendment is required to make the Bill effect its purpose, we will certainly consider it.

On Question, Bill read 2a, and committed to a Committee of the Whole House on Thursday next.