§ 61. Mr. Abse
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what consideration he has given to the Report of the Departmental Committee on Proceedings before Examining Justices concerning the restriction of reporting of committal proceedings, and to the Report of the Departmental Committee on Depositions; and if he will make a statement.
§ Sir F. Soskice
The Government have decided that reports of proceedings before examining justices should be restricted in the manner recommended by the Tucker Committee. They have also decided that the use of statutory declarations instead of oral testimony and of draft depositions as evidence-in-chief should be allowed in committal proceedings in accordance with the recommendations of the Byrne Committee. Before reaching these decisions careful consideration was given to the views which judges, magistrates, and others, concerned in the administration of criminal justice, expressed in answers to a questionnaire about the nature and purpose of these proceedings. The legislation necessary to give effect to these decisions will be introduced in due course.