HL Deb 04 May 1982 vol 429 cc1050-1

2.57 p.m.

Read a third time.

Clause 1 [Amendment of section 21 of 1956 c. 74]:

Lord Fletcher moved Amendment No. 1: Page 1, line 5, leave out ("(1)").

The noble Lord said: My Lords, I think it would be convenient if I spoke at the same time to the three amendments which stand in my name on the Marshalled List. The first is purely drafting. The second requires a word of explanation in that it arises from advice I have received, since the Committee was discharged, in that I am told that, with the amendment, the Bill will be acceptable to the Minister. The object of the amendment is to reduce the scope of the Bill and to make precise the infringing material the possession of which is to be an offence.

In due course I understand there will be a comprehensive Government Bill to amend the law of copyright, but that may take several years. This Bill in its amended form will, hopefully, cure the mischief of the piracy of sound recordings and cinematograph films which is now assuming alarming proportions. If the amendment is made and it becomes unnecessary to recommit the Bill, I understand the Bill will have a greater chance of success in another place.

Lord Lyell

My Lords, the Government would not wish to oppose the amendments standing in the name of the noble Lord, Lord Fletcher. The amended Bill is, however, seen solely as an effort to deal with the growing problem of copyright piracy. The Government are not in general willing to short-circuit the consultative process following the publication of the Green Paper on copyright, or indeed to enter into piecemeal copyright legislation.

Lord Fletcher

I am not sure what the effect of the Minister's comment is, my Lords, but I am hoping it means he will allow the Bill to proceed in this House.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord Fletcher moved Amendment No. 2:

Page 1, line 7, leave out from ("copyright)") to end of line 8 and insert ("after subsection (4) there shall be inserted the following new subsection— (4A) Any person who, at a time when copyright subsists in a sound recording or in a cinematograph film, by way of trade has in his possession any article which he knows to be an infringing copy of the sound recording or cinematograph film, as the case may be, shall be guilty of an offence under this subsection."; and in subsection (7) the word "or" where it first occurs shall be omitted and the words "or subsection (4A)"shall be added after the words "subsection (2)".").

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord Fletcher moved Amendment No. 3: In the Title, line 3, leave out ("in the course") and insert ("of a sound recording or cinematograph film by way").

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord Fletcher

My Lords, I beg to move that this Bill do now pass.

Moved, That the Bill do now pass.—(Lord Fletcher.)

On Question, Bill passed, and sent to the Commons.