I used Justice Questions today to ask the Lord Chancellor if he was confident that the law was on the side of the police and the law-abiding public in light of the disruptive Extinction Rebellion protests last year and the criminal damage and violence we saw over the weekend. Here’s what I said:
“Following the immensely disruptive Extinction Rebellion protests last year and the violence and criminal damage we saw committed over the weekend by a small minority of thugs, is my Right Honourable Friend confident that the law as it stands is on the side of the law-abiding majority and our brave police officers who have really stood up and been counted over the last couple of months?”
Letter to the Lord Chancellor regarding 10 individuals who have flouted and disrespected our justice system
I have now written to the Lord Chancellor about the 10 individuals who have flouted and disrespected our justice system by failing to appear in court in connection to the incident on Norwich Road last November. Warrants have now been issued for their arrest and I’ve asked the Lord Chancellor to put the full force of the Government behind bringing these people before our courts.
The individuals in question appear to be foreign nationals and there is a concern that some may have fled the country in an effort to avoid justice. Even if this has happened then they must still be brought back to answer the charges against them. Freedom of movement cannot mean that crimes can go unanswered for. This would send out completely the wrong message about our faith in the rule of law and would undermine our ability to deter further crimes from happening in the future if people get the impression justice can be avoided.
I’ve also called on the Lord Chancellor to ensure that when these 10 individuals are caught and do appear before our courts, they receive robust prison sentences for their behaviour which has shown a complete lack of respect for the rules we all live by.
I have also been in touch with Suffolk Constabulary today to stress that I will stand by them in doing what needs to be done to find these people and bring them to justice. I’ll keep providing updates on this issue moving forward.