HL Deb 01 July 1981 vol 422 cc255-6

6 After Clause 9, insert the following new clause:

("Sources of information

. No court may require a person to disclose, nor is any person guilty of contempt of court for refusing to disclose, the source of information contained in a publication for which he is responsible, unless it be established to the satisfaction of the court that disclosure is necessary in the interests of justice or national security or for the prevention of disorder or crime.").

7.20 p.m.

The Lord Chancellor

My Lords, I beg to move that this House doth agree with the Commons in their amendment which is numbered 6 on our Order Paper. We debated this amendment when this Bill was in this House. When the Bill was moved again there was a good deal of support for it and the Government accordingly accepted it. I explained in this House that I do not think it alters the law but, since the House of Commons seems to wish to put it in, I do not think any particular harm is done by inserting it. For that reason I advise the House to accept it.

Moved, That this House doth agree with the Commons in the said amendment.—(The Lord Chancellor.)

Lord Mishcon

My Lords, I think it is unnecessary to detain the House by any comment save to say that one has noted with respect what the noble and learned Lord has said and that one remembers the discussion that took place previously in this House.

On Question, Motion agreed to.