HL Deb 12 June 1996 vol 572 c169WA
Lord Avebury

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What has been the result of the investigations of the Department of Customs and Excise into allegations of contravention of the Foreign Prison-Made Goods Act 1897 by British companies purchasing graphite from the Beishu graphite mine, also known as Beishu Prison, China.

The Minister of State, Department of Social Security (Lord Mackay of Ardbrecknish)

Under the Foreign Prison-Made Goods Act 1897, the prohibition on importation can be enforced only if evidence is supplied to Customs proving the foreign prison-made origin of goods. Customs have received no evidence to date of the importation into the UK of graphite produced in any Chinese prison. Customs do however remain willing to act upon any evidence supplied to them despite the evident difficulties of proving such origin.

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