§ Mr. Ryman
asked the Attorney-General, pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Blyth Valley on 24 October, Official Report, c. 6, what factors were taken into account when deciding to prosecute Mr. Anthony Hamilton on a charge of attempted murder of a baby; what organisation made the complaint; and if he will make a statement.
§ The Attorney-General
The original complaint was made to the Bedfordshire police by the Life organisation on the basis of information it had received. The Prosecution of Offences Regulations 1978 required the matter to be reported to the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Having satisfied himself that the evidence was sufficient to justify proceedings, the director concluded that the nature of the allegation was such as to require prosecution. I know that the hon. Member is anxious that his decision may have been in some way influenced by representations made by or on behalf of Life.
In this particular case those pressures extended not merely to the critical decision to prosecute but to the manner in which the prosecution should be conducted. None the less, I am quite satisfied that at all stages the matter was dealt with according to the proper criteria and on the basis of the director's independent judgment.