HL Deb 18 October 1999 vol 605 cc778-89

(" .—(1) During the period beginning when a person makes a claim for asylum and ending when the Secretary of State gives him notice of the decision on the claim, he may not be removed from, or required to leave, the United Kingdom.

(2) Subsection (1) does not prevent—

  1. (a) directions for his removal being given during that period;
  2. (b) a deportation order being made against him during that period.

(3) But no such direction or order is to have effect during that period.

(4) This section is to be treated as having come in to force on 26 July 1993.").

The noble and learned Lord said: My Lords, I beg to move Amendment No. 14 with which is grouped Amendments Nos. 14A, 14B, 14C, 74, 304 and 315. Essentially, this group of amendments repeals and re-enacts Section 6 of the Asylum and Immigration Appeals Act 1993 but with some important modifications. Noble Lords will be aware that at the moment Section 6 of the 1993 Act provides that someone who has applied for asylum may not be removed from and be required to leave the United Kingdom until he has been notified of the decision on his claim. This will continue to be the case under Amendment No. 14. However, the amendment goes on to provide that, nevertheless, it is permissible to set removal directions or to make—that is to say, sign—a deportation order in respect of the person concerned, although the direction or order will not have any effect until the individual concerned has been notified of the outcome of the asylum application.

The reasons are technical and I shall explain them briefly. Section 8 of the 1993 Act deals with appeals, to a special adjudicator. There is no right of appeal against a decision to refuse asylum as such; rather, under Section 8(1) there is a right of appeal against refusal of entry. Under Section 8(2) there is a right of appeal against refusal to vary leave, and Section 8(3) provides a right of appeal against a decision t o make a deportation order or to refuse to revoke one. Section 8(4) gives a right of appeal against directions for someone's removal as an illegal entrant. In each case the grounds for appeal are that to remove the person concerned, or to require the individual to leave, would be contrary to our obligations under the 1951 convention.

Section 6 means that someone who has applied for asylum cannot be required to leave until he has been notified of the outcome of that application. In the case of an illegal entrant, if the notices are served in person the immigration officer cart hand the person concerned the letter explaining why the application has been refused, which brings to an end the period during which the person cannot be required to leave. He can then go on to set directions for that person's removal. The person can appeal to an adjudicator against the decision to give directions and the case comes before an adjudicator who assesses the merits of the claim to protection under the terms of the convention.

If the applicant is being notified by post, the position is more complicated. If the directions are a requirement to leave the UK, Section 6 in its present form stops the asylum decision and removal directions being sent to the applicant at the same time. This is because when the letter is sent the applicant obviously cannot have received the decision on his application. The immigration officer, therefore, has no power to make removal directions, but it is the decision to give removal directions which triggers the right to appeal. This bears most heavily on asylum applications from illegal entrants where about half the refusal decisions are served by post, but the principle applies also to other types of asylum application.

We therefore have two unattractive alternatives: either we have to serve notice of the asylum decision in person, which is resource-intensive and affords an opportunity for the person concerned to prolong the period during which he cannot be removed by failing to come in to receive the decision letter, or there is a situation in which the letter that refuses asylum is sent to the applicant, followed a couple of days later by a second letter which sets removal directions. Bureaucracy gone mad! From the standpoint of the applicant, he would have a letter saying that his asylum application had been refused but until he received the second letter in no way could he challenge that decision.

The government amendment allows removal directions to be given or a deportation order to be made before the applicant has been notified of the decision on the claim, although obviously the decision is taken only after the claim has been considered and the case worker has decided that the applicant is not a refugee. The directions or order do not take effect until after the subject has been informed that the application has been refused. Amendment No. 74, which is linked with this amendment, makes a corresponding adjustment to the protection from removal granted under the Bill to those who seek leave to enter or remain on ECHR grounds.

Subsection (4) of the main clause in this grouping provides that the provision is to be treated as having come into force on 26th July 1993. That was the date on which the 1993 Act itself came into force. For some years it has been the practice to serve by post letters that refuse asylum and give removal directions. In many, probably most, cases the person concerned will have appealed; the appeal may have been heard and the person concerned may have been removed. The legal advice we have received is that because there was no power to give removal directions at the time they were made, it is arguable that there was nothing to appeal about and those appeals are nullities. Those to whom this has happened have not been disadvantaged. They have been refused asylum and have appealed to an independent adjudicator who has considered the case and reached a decision on the evidence before him. There is nothing in terms of fairness to require them to be brought before an adjudicator to have the case considered a second time because the first appeal ought not to have been accepted as valid. We have therefore decided to take the pragmatic step, which we hope your Lordships will approve, of legitimising those removal directions and the appeals flowing from them retrospectively. Small consequential changes will be required at Third Reading if your Lordships approve this group of amendments.

It is probably convenient, subject to the view of the noble Baroness, if I deal briefly with Amendments Nos. 14A to 14C. I have given the explanation that stands behind our amendments. Amendments Nos. 14A to 14C, if carried, would mean that someone who had claimed asylum could not be required to leave until his application had been decided and there was either no appeal or an appeal had been determined. Amendment No. 14B, which seeks to delete subsection (2), would mean that removal directions that required an applicant to leave the country could not be set until the period of protection from removal had come to an end. We would be going round and round in circles. Bearing in mind questions raised earlier today in my absence—for which I apologise—I appreciate that there has been a relatively short time to consider some aspects of these matters. That is why I have sought to explain the deficiencies, as we see them, of Amendments Nos. 14A to 14C. I hope that that explanation is sufficient and that your Lordships will approve the amendments to which I spoke earlier.

Baroness Williams of Crosby moved, as an amendment to Amendment No. 14, Amendment No. 14A: Line 3, in subsection (1), leave out ("the Secretary of State gives him notice of the decision on the claim") and insert ("that claim is determined").

The noble Baroness said: My Lords, on the face of it Amendment No. 14 appears to be rather innocent and the amendments that I have tabled may look no less innocent. However, despite the explanation offered by the noble and learned Lord, Lord Williams, for which I thank him, there are a number of questions I should like to pursue. There is an evident conflict between Amendment No. 14 tabled by the Government and the text of the explanation note on the clauses. This is more than a mere procedural matter.

Under Amendment No. 14, it would be possible for the Secretary of State to give notice to someone who had made a claim for asylum that he would be likely to be removed at the end of that period. From what the noble and learned Lord, Lord Williams of Mostyn, said, notice of intention to remove the asylum seeker could be given at any point between the time of the asylum seeker making a claim and the decision being taken.

The explanation note from the Home Office on this clause states: Where an illegal entrant has applied for asylum and that application has been refused, the new clause will allow the decision letter and the notice of the removal directions … to be sent to the applicant at the same time". We seem, therefore, to have made rather a large leap from the Explanatory Notes. We do not take exception to that because, first, it would be after the asylum seeker's application had been refused; and, secondly, it would be simultaneous with the notice of appeal. We fully accept that. But that is a very different proposition from receiving a notice of removal in the course of an asylum seeker's application and before any decision has been made.

Unless I am under a large misapprehension, there are two reasons why the difference is serious and not merely procedural. First, the applicant would be sent notice of his probable removal before any decision had been made on his claim. Therefore, the phrase in the explanation note "an illegal entrant" makes an assumption which cannot be made. We do not know that the entrant is illegal; he might be a bona fide asylum seeker. Secondly, and at least as disturbing, the procedure of putting a removal direction before the asylum seeker—the noble and learned Lord, Lord Williams of Mostyn, may be able to help us—might prejudice hearings of his claim in courts other than those under the Home Office adjudication procedure.

Under new Clause 25, someone accused of entering this country with fraudulent documents could be prosecuted for fraud because he had fraudulent documents, despite the fact that he had made his original application under the refugee convention, and could then use the defence that he had come under the refugee convention, but that case would not mean that the person might not be prejudiced by having a deportation order against him. We are not clear whether in a magistrates' court considering a charge of fraudulent papers the asylum seeker could be described as someone against whom a deportation order had been made although his case would not by that time have been decided by the Secretary of State. That is our first and real concern.

Our second concern is that the phrase "during the period" in Amendment No. 14 suggests that the deportation order could be laid at any time. The legislation appears to be unambiguous on that point. But that is very different from the reference in the explanation note that, the new clause will allow the decision letter and the notice of the removal directions … to be sent to the applicant at the same time". We have no objection to that provided that the claim has been determined. Indeed, we believe that it is efficient and will speed up procedures. But that is very different from making an assumption that someone will he removed when his or her case has not even been heard.

I add a final consideration. We believe that this is important; that is why we have put down the amendments at relatively short notice. I refer to the impact on the asylum seeker whose case had not been determined of receiving suddenly by post an indication that he is about to be returned to the place from which he came; in other words, that he is to be removed or deported. I ask noble Lords to think for a moment about the impact on someone who has only just arrived in this country. He has made an application for asylum. He may have strong reasons for claiming asylum, including, for example, evidence of torture, but within a matter of days of lodging his claim he receives a removal or deportation order. I can imagine that that would put such a person under the most extreme stress and would enable us to distinguish clearly—as we on these Benches seek to do throughout the Bill—between someone illegitimately seeking to enter this country and a bona fide asylum seeker.

We do not regard Amendment No. 14 as a minor matter. Regrettably, we have to regard it as a significant matter, not least because of the wide difference between the assurances of the explanation note as to what Amendment No. 14 means, the wording of the Bill, and the remarks of the noble and learned Lord, Lord Williams.

Amendment No. 14A is intended primarily to deal with the time at which a deportation or removal order could be served on an asylum seeker. We have consistently stated, and believe, that this should happen only when the claim is determined although procedures could move as quickly as possible after that.

Amendment No. 14C makes plain how strongly we believe that action should be taken as quickly as possible after that. We have indicated that we believe that there should be very quick action on that matter.

Subsection (2) is objectionable for the reasons I have stated. The phrase "during that period" is not compatible with "at the same time". The issuing of a deportation order could raise huge issues if the matter passed to a magistrates' court in the way that we understand could happen under new Clause 25.

We shall listen closely to the Government's response. However, at this stage I cannot promise in all circumstances not to try the opinion of the House. I beg to move.

5.15 p.m.

Lord Renton

My Lords, I sympathise sincerely with the Government's efforts to control immigration and bogus asylum seekers. However, in my opinion the clause is very confusing. It contradicts itself and other clauses of the Bill. The noble Baroness, Lady Williams of Crosby, wishes to leave out subsection (3).

Baroness Williams of Crosby

My Lords, we suggest that subsection (2) should be left out.

Lord Renton

My Lords, I apologise. If subsection (2) were left out, the position would be chaotic. Subsection (3) should surely not apply if the immigrant is already known to be a notorious political terrorist; has a bad criminal record; entered the United Kingdom with the manifest intention of taking aggressive action against Her Majesty's Government or some group of people here; or if he is obviously a bogus asylum seeker. Subsection (4) is most unusual. It is retrospective to such an extent that it affects the past six years.

I understand that the Government are trying their best to deal with a difficult and complicated situation, but I believe that they should take away Amendment No. 14 and reconsider it. I should have thought that they could do without it, but they should certainly reconsider it between now and the next stage. Amendments Nos. 14A, 14B and 14C make the measure even more ineffective and I hope that they will be rejected.

Lord Avebury

My Lords, perhaps I may reassure the noble Lord, Lord Renton. Supposing that the person concerned is a terrorist or bogus asylum seeker and the Secretary of State has so ruled, he will be able to give a decision on the claim. The period mentioned in subsection (1) will have expired and the direction or order could have effect.

The correct reading of the clause is that the direction or order is not to have effect during the period between two events. The first event is when the person makes a claim and the second is when the Secretary of State gives him notice of his decision on the claim.

Lord Renton

My Lords, I thank the noble Lord for giving way. What he says is negatived by what is put into subsection (3) of the new clause, which states: But no such direction or order is to have effect during that period".

Lord Avebury

My Lords, no direction for his removal—

Lord Carter

My Lords, we are on Report; we are not in Committee.

Lord Avebury

My Lords, I will bear that in mind and not give way in future. I am sorry if I broke the conventions of the House, but it was important for me to clear up a misapprehension in the mind of the noble Lord, Lord Renton, and perhaps, because of his great authority, in the minds of other Members of your Lordships' House.

The direction or order does not have effect during the period of the two events I have described. However, my noble friend Lady Williams pinpointed something which also causes me great anxiety. The wording of the new clause is directly contradictory to the Explanatory Notes issued by the Home Office, which states, and I have every sympathy with this, that it wishes to serve the notice of decision on the claim and the removal directions at the same moment, thus triggering off the right of appeal. But as my noble friend explained, the directions for removal, or the deportation order, can be served at any time during the period between the two events I have described.

The Secretary of State, if he chooses to do so, can give directions the day after receiving a claim, even though he will not make a decision on it for months or even years. We know that people do not receive the first decision for many years after the first application. Therefore, according to the clause, throughout the whole period an asylum seeker will have a removal direction hanging over his head. I am sure that that was not the Government's intention and therefore they need to take the new clause away and think about it again.

Lord Alton of Liverpool

My Lords, while supporting the points made by the noble Baroness, Lady Williams, and the noble Lord, Lord Avebury, perhaps I may reiterate the point about natural justice. It would be peculiar indeed in this country if someone were charged with a felony before the investigation had been completed. That is the analogy one can draw with the procedure placed before your Lordships' House.

I want to ask the Minister a direct question about the practical effect on someone against whom a removal notice has been served, but who before a decision is reached, decides to return to his country of origin. What will happen if on another occasion he applies to come to this country, or to go to any other country, and is asked, "Has a removal notice ever been lodged against you?"?

Surely, in those circumstances he will have to give the truthful answer, "Yes, it has.". Can the Minister say whether that will lead to a prejudicial decision being taken against a subsequent visit being able to be made either to the United Kingdom or to any other country?

Lord Cope of Berkeley

My Lords, I have considerable sympathy with what the Government are trying to achieve by inserting the new clause. However, it might be helpful if it were a little closer to the Explanatory Notes which were sent to some of us, and was modified so as to make clear that the notice will not be served on the individual concerned except at the same time as, or later than, the notice of the determination of his application for asylum. I believe that in that way we shall overcome all the difficulties that have been expressed during this short debate.

There is no such amendment on the Marshalled List, but no doubt there could be at a later stage.

Lord Williams of Mostyn

My Lords, I shall give careful attention to what the noble Lord, Lord Cope, has said. I cannot give an undertaking, but I shall think about it with some care.

I turn to the problems raised by the noble Baroness, Lady Williams. I understand her concern, but, taking her amendments together, we could never remove anyone who had claimed asylum on arrival or any illegal entrant who had claimed asylum, whether or not that application was refused. The reason, which I tried to indicate clearly, is that removal directions cannot be set until the appeal has been completed. However, the appeal cannot even begin until the removal directions are set. That is the difficulty with Amendments Nos. 14A, 14B and 14C.

Under Section 6, we cannot set removal directions until the applicant has been notified of the outcome of his application. Section 6 does not state "until the claim has been decided". That is why decisions cannot be served at the same time and the wording I am requesting would allow removal directions to be set before the applicant has been notified. We shall in every case consider whether the subject is a refugee. If the subject is a refugee, we shall not set removal directions. We do not propose to set removal directions until the asylum case has been considered, but at the moment we cannot do that until the asylum seeker has been told.

The noble Lord, Lord Alton of Liverpool, asked a particular question. If someone is being granted leave to remain as a refugee, he is allowed to stay. Therefore, he will not be abroad seeking to come here and I suggest that in those circumstances the noble Lord's question does not arise.

Lord Alton of Liverpool

My Lords, I am grateful to the Minister for giving way. With respect, that was not the question I put. I asked what would happen if the individual against whom a removal notice had been made in advance of any of these procedures taking place decided to short-circuit the mechanism by returning to his country, because circumstances had changed there, and did not go forward with an appeal in the United Kingdom. If he were subsequently asked whether a removal notice had ever been placed on him, would that prejudice his subsequent request to come here or to enter any other country?

Lord Williams of Mostyn

My Lords, in those circumstances, I do not believe that it could prejudice, in the sense that the noble Lord means—namely, determine adversely—any subsequent decision.

The directions will not be served until there is a decision on the claim. I am sorry that I was wrong in my example; I am sure that it was my misunderstanding. In the circumstances predicated by the noble Lord, there would not have been a decision. If he asks whether a person would be irretrievably damaged or prejudiced by the circumstances he describes, my answer is that as far as I am aware, no.

I ought to research that matter further because I plainly did not understand the question the first time round. I or my noble friend Lord Bassam will write to the noble Lord with an answer as to whether he is right or I have misunderstood him again.

We are trying to get some shape into a situation which everyone agrees is not satisfactory. I shall think about what has been said. If true difficulty still remains, obviously we shall give the matter further attention. For the moment, I invite the noble Baroness not to press Amendments Nos. 14A, 14B and 14C, and urge the House to accept government Amendment No. 14.

5.30 p.m.

Baroness Williams of Crosby

My Lords, I should say right away that if the amendments are defective— they may be—it is partly due, first, to the confusion, which I attempted to explain, between the amendment on the Marshalled List and the explanatory memorandum; and, secondly, because although we read Amendment No. 14 carefully, we simply could not square it with the explanatory memorandum. With great respect to the eloquence of the noble and learned Lord, which is very great indeed, we are still unable to do so.

The noble and learned Lord indicated that he would give consideration to the points being made in this short debate, but he also said clearly that he could not give an undertaking. The noble and learned Lord, Lord Williams, agrees that he cannot at the moment answer the subsequent question of the noble Lord, Lord Alton, because it is on a point somewhat different from that which he had in mind; nor has he been able to respond to the point I raised, which is admittedly extremely complicated, about the impact of new Clause 25. I asked whether it would mean that a defence by an asylum seeker against a charge of entering the country with fraudulent documents might in fact be prejudiced by a statement that a deportation or removal order was already outstanding against him, although the claim itself by definition would not have been decided because he would not be in front of a magistrates' court if that had been the case.

Therefore, we fear that Amendment No. 14 carries many more complexities than we at first thought. At first we were happy to welcome it, but the more we thought about it and talked to one another and the more we consulted people with long legal knowledge in the field of immigration law, the more we became concerned. If the noble and learned Lord and his colleagues would be willing to consider tabling a redrafted amendment which met some of our worries and which would also deal with the gap between the explanation note and the clause, we should not press our amendment at the present time.

We would much rather not do so, because we want to work with the Government on this matter and we certainly do not want to string out an endless process of appeal. The Government are aware that we have always said that we support them on speeding up the procedure, and we still do. However, I am afraid that the complexities are such that we dare not allow this amendment to go ahead as it stands, because the Bill will go to another place on the understanding that all the parties have agreed on the matter. With great respect, for the reasons which I hope I have made reasonably clear, we simply cannot leave it like that.

I shall pause. If the noble and learned Lord wants to intervene before I sit down, I am happy not to sit down for the moment. If he feels unable to intervene, I am afraid that we shall have to seek the view of the House, not on the amendments but on the clause itself; that is, on Amendment No. 14.

Lord Williams of Mostyn

My Lords, the noble Baroness has been helpful, as always. I am intervening not to meet what she asks for, but simply to say that I cannot do so. We have thought carefully and come to an appropriate conclusion on this matter. I have said, as always, that my noble friend Lord Bassam and I are perfectly willing to reconsider the matter, but l cannot give any guarantee. I believe that we have got it right and I should not want the noble Baroness to be under any misapprehension about what is likely to follow.

Lord Cope of Berkeley

My Lords, I am sorry to interrupt the noble and learned Lord, but is he going to look at the drafting again and particularly at the point I raised?

Lord Williams of Mostyn

Certainly, my Lords, I said that I would, but I believe that the noble Baroness would like me to say either that I shall take the amendment away, or something more positive than that. I shall look at the drafting in the way that I mentioned to the noble Lord, Lord Cope, in response to his helpful intervention. Amendment No. 14 is indeed my baby. I commend it to the House.

Baroness Williams of Crosby

My Lords, I had already indicated, I hope, that for the reasons which I have already explained to the noble and learned Lord, Lord Williams, I intend to seek the opinion of the House on Amendment No. 14, but not to press our amendments. I beg leave to withdraw Amendment No. 14A.

Amendment No. 14A, as an amendment to Amendment No. 14, by leave, withdrawn.

[Amendments Nos. 14B and 14C, as amendments to Amendment No. 14, not moved.]

5.35 p.m.

On Question, Whether the said amendment (No. 14) shall be agreed to?

*Their Lordships divided: Contents, 129; Not-Contents, 47.

Division No. 1
Acton, L. Darcy de Knayth, B.
Ahmed, L. David, B.
Allenby of Megiddo, V. Davies of Coity, L.
Alli, L. Davies of Oldham, L.
Amos, B. Denham, L.
Archer of Sandwell, L. Desai, L.
Ashley of Stoke, L. Diamond, L.
Bach, L. Dixon, L.
Barnett, L. Donoughue, L.
Bassam of Brighton, L. Dormand of Easington, L.
Berkeley, L. Dubs, L.
Blackstone, B. Eatwell, L.
Blease, L. Evans of Parkside, L.
Bragg, L. Evans of Watford, L.
Brett, L. Falconer of Thoroton, L.
Brooke of Alverthorpe, L. Farrington of Ribbleton, B.
Brookman, L. Faulkner of Worcester, L.
Brooks of Tremorfa, L. Filkin, L.
Burlison, L. Gale, B.
Carter, L.[Teller] Gilbert, L.
Christopher, L. Gordon of Strathblane, L.
Clarke of Hampstead, L. Gould of Potternewton, B.
Cledwyn of Penrhos, L. Graham of Edmonton, L.
Cocks of Hartcliffe, L. Gregson, L.
Crawley, B. Grenfell, L.
Currie of Marylebone, L. Hacking, L.
Hardy of Wath, L. Morris of Manchester, L.
Harris of Haringey, L. Murray of Epping Forest, L.
Hayman, B. Nicol, B.
Healey, L. Palmer, L.
Hilton of Eggardon, B. Park of Monmouth, B.
Hogg of Cumbernauld, L. Peston, L.
Hollis of Heigham, B. Pitkeathley, B.
Howie of Troon, L. Plant of Highfield, L.
Hughes of Woodside, L. Ponsonby of Shulbrede, L.
Hunt of Kings Heath, L. Prys-Davies, L.
Irvine of Lairg, L. (Lord Chancellor) Puttnam, L.
Ramsay of Cartvale, B.
Islwyn, L. Rea, L.
Janner of Braunstone, L. Rendell of Babergh, B.
Jay of Paddington, B. (Lord Richard, L.
Privy Seal) Rogers of Riverside, L.
Jenkins of Putney, L. Sainsbury of Turville, L.
Kilbracken, L. Scotland of Asthal, B.
King of West Bromwich, L. Sewel, L.
Lauderdale, E. Shepherd, L.
Lea of Crondall, L. Sheppard of Liverpool, L.
Levy, L. Simon, V.
Lipsey, L. Simon of Glaisdale, L.
Lockwood, B. Stone of Blackheath, L.
Lofthouse of Pontefract, L. Strabolgi, L.
Longford, E. Symons of Vernham Dean, B.
Lovell-Davis, L. Taylor of Blackburn, L.
McCarthy, L. Taylor of Gryfe, L.
Macdonald of Tradeston, L. Tenby, V.
McIntosh of Haringey, L. Thornton, B.
[Teller] Turner of Camden, B.
Mallalieu, B. Uddin, B.
Mar, C. Varley, L.
Marsh, L. Walker of Doncaster, L.
Masham of Ilton, B. Warner, L.
Mason of Barnsley, L. Warwick of Undercliffe, B.
Milner of Leeds, L. Watson of Invergowrie, L.
Molloy, L. Whitty, L.
Molyneaux of Killead, L. Wilkins, B.
Monkswell, L. Williams of Elvel, L.
Montgomery of Alamein, V. Williams of Mostyn, L.
Addington, L. Lichfield, Bp.
Ailesbury, M. Limerick, E.
Alton of Liverpool, L. McNair, L.
Avebury, L. Maddock, B.
Barker, B. Merrivale, L.
Blyth, L. Monk Bretton, L.
Bradshaw, L. Newby, L.
Carlile of Berriew, L. Ogmore, L.
Carlisle, E. Oxford, Bp.
Dholakia, L. [Teller] Phillips of Sudbury, L.
Falkland, V. Razzall, L.
Redesdale, L.
Goodhart, L. Richardson of Calow, B.
Greenway, L. Sandwich, E.
Grey, E. Sharp of Guildford, B.
Hampton, L. Southwark, Bp.
Hamwee, B. Taverne, L.
Harris of Greenwich, L. Thomas of Walliswood, B.
Holme of Cheltenham, L. Thomson of Monifieth, L.
Hylton, L. Thurso, V.
Jacobs, L. Tope, L.
Jenkins of Hillhead, L. Tordoff, L.
Kinnoull, E. Wallace of Saltaire, L.
Lester of Herne Hill, L. Williams of Crosby, B. [Teller]

[*The Tellers for the Contents reported 129 votes. The Clerks recorded 131 names.]

Resolved in the affirmative, and amendment agreed to accordingly.

5.45 p.m.

Lord Williams of Mostyn moved Amendment No. 15: After Clause 11, insert the following new clause—