HC Deb 20 November 2000 vol 357 cc80-1W
15. Dr. Julian Lewis

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on recent discoveries in the Berlin Stasi archive about paid Stasi agents in the United Kingdom. [137460]

Mr. Straw

As I said to the House on 21 October 1999,Official Report, columns 590–91, it would be wholly improper to denounce anyone without their having been convicted of an offence. The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department, my hon. Friend the Member for North Warwickshire (Mr. O'Brien), also explained to the House in a debate on British Stasi agents on 21 December 1999, Official Report, column 188WH, that the fact of a name appearing in the East German intelligence records is not, of itself, proof of any wrongdoing. The records need to be treated with caution.

The Security Service continues to investigate cases arising from the Stasi records. Where the criteria agreed with the prosecuting authorities are met, cases are referred to the prosecuting authorities to decide whether a prosecution should be mounted.