§ Sir Patrick Mayhew
I have today arranged for copies of Sir Louis Blom-Cooper's first annual report as Independent Commissioner for the Holding Centres to be placed in the Library.
I welcome the report, which contains a very comprehensive and detailed examination of the procedures governing the custody of detainees in the police offices.
I am pleased to note that Sir Louis reports that he hasfound absolutely nothing that might give anyone the slightest cause for concern about the care and treatment of detainees held in the custody of uniformed officers of the RUC".
It is most important that the police offices should permit the very necessary detention provisions of the Prevention of Terrorism Act to be operated properly and effectively. The police must be able to take all proper measures to secure the information they need in the interests of justice, and suspects while in custody must be treated fairly and in accordance with all relevant statutory and administrative safeguards. The Independent Commissioner provides a valuable source of information and advice in that regard, and I am most grateful to Sir Louis Blom-Cooper for his work throughout the past year.
I intend to give careful and detailed consideration to the report.