§ Lord Spens
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether it is the current policy of the Serious Fraud Office to return documents obtained under 61WA the issue of a notice under Section 2 of the Criminal Justice Act 1987 without disclosing each and every document to the defence as required under the Attorney General's guidelines; and, if this is the case, how does this conform to the judgment of the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) in R v. Ward.
§ The Lord Chancellor (Lord Mackay of Clashfern)
The Serious Fraud Office has in place procedures to ensure proper compliance with the obligations of disclosure arising from the judgment of the Court of Appeal inR v. Ward. These include delivery to the defence of an index listing, in varying degrees of detail, all material gathered during an investigation with the exception of material which it is proposed to seek the authority of the court to withhold. Material obtained in the course of an investigation may be returned to third parties if subsequently it does not appear to have any bearing on the case, but such material will have been recorded in the index referred to.