Anthony Peto QC is co-head of Blackstone Chambers and co-author with Andrew Tyrie MP of “Neither Just nor Secure” published by the Centre for Policy Studies. This article represents his personal views.
Robert Buckland’s response to my article posted on 25th February 2013 contains as many misconceptions and myths as his first. I list some of them below. But first it is important to be clear about what is still wrong with this Bill. Here are two of its most serious flaws.
The first serious flaw
First, the government is resisting the inclusion of words that would ensure that “secret courts” (“Closed Material Procedures” or “CMPs”) would only be used as a last resort. Under the amendments recommended by the Joint Committee on Human Rights (“JCHR”), passed by the House of Lords, the court must be satisfied that a fair trial “would not be possible by any other means” before ordering a CMP.