Peter Lilley compared the government?s rushed legislation to prevent suspected football hooligans travelling abroad with the equally hasty ?Dangerous Dogs Bill?. ?This will be known as Jack Straw?s Dangerous Thugs Bill,? he warned.
“I would support measures which helped convict real thugs guilty of violence and disorder and stopped them travelling to disrupt football matches either at home or abroad.
“But Jack Straw?s Bill is a massive infringement of the liberties of innocent football fans. Even innocent people travelling abroad on holiday or business near the time of a football match could fall foul of it.
“This Bill gives a policeman the right to arrest and detain travellers just on suspicion that they may have been or intends to be violent or disorderly. It then gives courts the power to remove their passports and stop them travelling without proving them guilty of any crime. The courts won?t even be required to operate on the basis of ?innocent unless proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt?. For the first time people can be punished on the ?balance of probabilities?.
“This is bad law, badly drafted, and rushed through Parliament in the middle of the night.?