HL Deb 20 July 1967 vol 285 cc376-8

[References are to Bill (186) as first printed for the Commons]

[Nos. 1 to 6]

Clause 11, page 7, line 29, leave out subsection (1) and insert—

("(1) Subject to subsections (1A) to (2) below, this Part of this Act shall not extend to Scotland or to Northern Ireland.

(1A) Subsection (1) above shall not restrict the operation of this Part of this Act—

  1. (a) in so far as it affects—
    1. (i) the Extradition Acts 1870 to 1935; or
    2. (ii) the Army Act 1955, the Air Force Act 1955 or the Naval Discipline Act 1957; or
    3. (iii) section 2 of the Forfeiture Act 1870 or any other enactment or rule of law relating to any parliamentary disqualification or other disability or penal consequence arising from an offence being felony; or
  2. (b) in so far as (by paragraph 10 of Schedule 2) it amends the Regimental Debts Act 1893.

(1B) The amendments made by paragraph 2 of Schedule 2 to this Act in section 4 of the Vagrancy Act 1824 and section 15 of the Prevention of Crimes Act 1871 shall extend to Scotland.")

Clause 12, page 7, line 44, leave out ("29th August 1967") and insert ("1st January 1968")

Schedule 2, page 15, line 16, after ("property") insert ("but did not include loss or damage due to an accident arising out of the presence of a motor vehicle on a road") Schedule 2, page 15,line 26, leave out ("on") and insert ("in consequence of a") Schedule 2, page 15,line 27, leave out from ("or") to second ("of") in line 28 and insert ("is imprisoned or detained to serve a sentence") Schedule 2, page 15,line 53, at end insert (",and in the Companies Act 1948, in section 328(2), there shall be omitted paragraph (a) and in paragraph (b) the words 'in Scotland'")


My Lords, I beg to move, That this House doth agree with the Commons in their Amendments Nos. 1 to 6, en bloc. I shall explain them as briefly as possible, which I think will be to your Lordships' convenience. Amendment No. 1 is a drafting Amendment relating to the application of Part I of the Bill to Scotland and Northern Ireland. Its effect, though, is the same as that of the subsection as originally drafted. Amendment No. 2 postpones the date on which Part I of the Bill comes into effect from August 29 this year until January 1, 1968. This was done to ensure that courts and practitioners had enough time to study the changes involved before they came into effect. Past experience has shown that many practitioners rely on information about changes in the law being published in a supplement to Archbold, and there would be insufficient time for that before August 29. It was therefore desirable to defer the date to ensure that all concerned had time to absorb the changes. To ensure the minimum inconvenience to the courts the date had to be one when there was a minimum of current business. The first convenient date to meet that requirement was January 1 next year.

Amendment No. 3 to Schedule 2 is an Amendment of some substance and was made to meet representations by the Magistrates' Association, the Justices Clerks' Society and the Royal Automobile Club, that criminal courts ought not to have to consider awarding compensation for damage arising from motoring offences in which difficult issues of contributory negligence may arise. The Amendment excludes such damage from the provisions in paragraph 9 of Schedule 2 to the Bill which extends the powers of courts to award compensation under Section 4 of the Forfeiture Act 1870. Amendments Nos. 4 and 5 are both technical Amendments relating to an entry in Schedule 2 amending the Regimental Debts Act 1893, and they are required because of the provisions for suspended sentences in the Criminal Justice Bill.

Amendment No. 6 was made to bring a provision in the Companies Act, in relation to the property of companies, in line with a comparable provision in relation to the property of bankrupts, which was already dealt with in paragraph 12(2) of Schedule 2 to the Bill. Under Section 328(2) of the Companies Act 1948, a person who takes in pawn or pledge or otherwise receives the property of a company in liquidation knowing it to have been disposed of in certain criminal circumstances, is liable to be punished as if he had received the property knowing it to have been obtained by a misdemeanour. Under the present law this carries a maximum of seven years. The effect of the Bill without the Amendment, to which I now ask your Lordships to agree, would have been to increase that maximum to 14 years. The Amendment preserves the existing maximum of seven years in line with the provision in paragraph 12(2) of Schedule 2 to the Bill in relation to the property of bankrupts. That, briefly, is the effect of these Amendments, and I beg to move.

Moved, That this House doth agree with the Commons in the said Amendments.—(Lord Stonham.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.