Legislation / Legal
ScotGov: Statistics published by the Scottish Government provide new detail on the scale of religious hate crimes across Scotland. The report does not present any information about the religious beliefs or affiliations of the people targeted by the offensive conduct.
Proposed new laws seek to create 2 new distinct offences:
* The first offence targets any sectarian & threatening behaviour expressed at & around football matches which is likely to cause public disorder
* The second offence relates to the communication of threats of serious harm or which are intended to stir up religious hatred on the internet or other communications
PC&PE: The House of Lords Constitution Committee has published a report on Part 1 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill (This is the part of the Bill which deals with legal aid). The Committee states that the extent of the proposed cuts to legal aid, and the manner in which they are to be delivered, raises issues around important constitutional principles of access to justice.
Access to justice and role of Lord Chancellor
MoJ: Easy to use online maps that give a local breakdown of re-offending have been published for the first time by the Ministry of Justice on the new 'Making Sense of Criminal Justice' website. People can now go online to find out the sentences handed down by local courts, check the rate offenders have committed further crimes in their area, and make comparisons with national trends.
ScotGov: A major review which offers a considered examination on the future of Scots law & practice following the UK Supreme Court's Cadder ruling last year and the impact of recent legislation on criminal procedure was published last week.
NIA: The Northern Ireland Assembly Committee for the Environment has expressed its frustration at the possibility of delays to implementing the Goods Vehicles (Licensing of Operators) Act (NI) 2010 by the Department of the Environment.
HO: A new power to temporarily control potentially harmful new drugs came into effect overnight, alongside an importation ban on two substances closely linked to chemicals found in ‘legal high’ brand ‘Ivory Wave’.
ICO: Oliver Letwin must ensure that he keeps personal information secure or face formal enforcement action, the Information Commissioner has said.
DfE: The Coalition Government's Education Bill has been granted Royal Assent.
DCLG: An era of Whitehall control has ended with a historic shift in power back to local people, as the Localism Bill becomes law.