MPs should have immunity from arrest

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122025278
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Not just MPs but Peers too.

I think they should still be arrestable, but only after a judge has heard the case for arrest and given their consent, i.e. issued a warrant for arrest. All they'd need to find is that there is reasonable suspicion and that it is necessary.
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alexgr97
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But if the police find reasonable suspicion then they can arrest them? All this does it put unecessary power in the hands of the judiciary = open to bribery/corruption? The rule of law dictates equality before the law, and this would clearly undermine this. I disagree with this entirely - besides, what benefits would it have?
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zippity.doodah
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immune from arrest?! why?!
do you have no consideration for equality or the rule of law? what the heck's the matter with you?
a government that is immune from the law has no legitimacy and has no right to represent citizenry
since when should MPs be treated as kings or better when they are simply elected to legislate, not to override the justice system? are human beings unquestionable? why on earth would MPs be unquestionable let alone human beings? you think an MP would be able to resist using this power to get away with absolute catastrophes e.g. bank robberies and OATP charges? why? they are basically free-criminals for at least 5 years like this! you will be encouraging the worst kinds of people to be our law makers!
and I have equal hatred for your other absolutely poisonous idea of putting a picture of the prime minister's portrait in every public building
these proposals are nothing short of the wet dreams of a despotic police-state corruption advocate
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gladders
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They have immunity for freedom of speech purposes, but if they are committing crimes such as murder, burglary or corruption, for example, they do not, and should not, have immunity.
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Advice Guru
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Is this a law you got from Idi Amin Dada's government or Gaddafi's government?
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ManifoldManifest
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What beneficial effect would this possibly have on government?
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Budgie99
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that wouldn't be fair, just cause they're important doesn't mean they can't be arrested...
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n00
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:yawn:
http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show....php?t=2263892
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SilverAlex
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Hahahahahahaha.
ebin trole xDDDDDDD :^^^^^^)
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Quady
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#10
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(Original post by 122025278)
Not just MPs but Peers too.

I think they should still be arrestable, but only after a judge has heard the case for arrest and given their consent, i.e. issued a warrant for arrest. All they'd need to find is that there is reasonable suspicion and that it is necessary.
Well they already do for things they say in Parliament...

MPs aren't special anyway, they aren't even in the Government.
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Welsh Bluebird
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I don't think this is a serious thread but I will answer it as if it is. I think all those within the political system should be treated as if they were a normal citizen. Giving them immunity from arrest would only widen the already problematic divide between the political class and the normal person. We need to close this gap, not widen it.
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Plantagenet Crown
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No way jose
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122025278
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(Original post by Welsh Bluebird)
I don't think this is a serious thread but I will answer it as if it is. I think all those within the political system should be treated as if they were a normal citizen. Giving them immunity from arrest would only widen the already problematic divide between the political class and the normal person. We need to close this gap, not widen it.
They would not have immunity from arrest at all, they would still be arrestable, but only after a High Court judge has looked at the case for the arrest and granted it.
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pjm600
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(Original post by 122025278)
They would not have immunity from arrest at all, they would still be arrestable, but only after a High Court judge has looked at the case for the arrest and granted it.
So if an MP is caught assaulting someone, they couldn't be arrested without warrant?
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122025278
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(Original post by alexgr97)
But if the police find reasonable suspicion then they can arrest them? All this does it put unecessary power in the hands of the judiciary = open to bribery/corruption? The rule of law dictates equality before the law, and this would clearly undermine this. I disagree with this entirely - besides, what benefits would it have?
There isn't really anything to say on your points about power in the judiciary, possibility of bribery, those points are totally moot as the same could be alleged of the police.

The rule of law does dictate equality before the law, but you're making a huge fallacy here. Firstly, MPs and Peers are already not equal before the law. They have many special privileges and rights that ordinary people do not have. Secondly, they would still face the same consequences for breaking the law as they do now. They would not be immune from any prosecution, even from arrest, if certain conditions are met. Thirdly, MPs and Peers hold an office, they are legislators. They are their to pass or block legislation, scrutinise the government and it's agencies (including the police).
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122025278
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(Original post by pjm600)
So if an MP is caught assaulting someone, they couldn't be arrested without warrant?
They couldn't be handcuffed and immediately carted off to a police station, no.

But you have to look at the purpose of arrest and the origins of it. Most arrests are to assist in an investigation and to lead to a prosecution. When someone is arrested for rape, murder, fraud, even MPs' expenses, misconduct in public office, incitement, every single one of those arrests happens after the offence has been committed. I bet 99% of assault arrests are made after the assault has taken place.

We then have to decide, would an investigation be prejudiced by having a High Court judge consent to the arrest first? Well the evidence is no.

The Queen is immune from not only arrest, but prosecution. How often does she go around breaking the law? The point is, MPs would still be prosecuted and even arrested. They just couldn't be picked up off the street.
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122025278
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(Original post by gladders)
They have immunity for freedom of speech purposes, but if they are committing crimes such as murder, burglary or corruption, for example, they do not, and should not, have immunity.
gladders I am not arguing for immunity for committing crime. I am arguing for immunity from arrest, without a High Court judge agreeing first.

The problem is, people think arrest implies guilt, it does not and should never. Thousands of people are arrested and released without charge every year. Under PACE, a police officer can arrest you then immediately "dearrest" someone. Even once someone is arrested, they can only be held for a few hours, without first a senior police officer agreeing and then a judge agreeing to an extension. Before a person is arrested, there is no legal argument before a judge and jury, an arrest could quite easily be illegal and many are i.e. "wrongful arrest". It's a summary power the state can use, but is strictly controlled for the reasons I've stated.

What I am essentially arguing is that MPs and Peers should be immune from wrongful arrest. Now of course there are cases when the public would be arrested and MPs couldn't be, but these would almost never happen and even if they did, it would not prejudice an investigation. If I am correct, Chris Huhne was never arrested, yet still did months in prison. Those caught fiddling expenses, the offences had already taken place. The arrests take place after looking at the evidence, which could easily be passed to a judge, in most cases police solicitors will look at the evidence before police make a high profile arrest anyway. And the purpose of the arrest was different, it wasn't to "stop" a crime taking place but to prosecute one.
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Welsh Bluebird
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(Original post by 122025278)
They would not have immunity from arrest at all, they would still be arrestable, but only after a High Court judge has looked at the case for the arrest and granted it.
It should then be the same for the normal person otherwise you're just widening the gap.
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alexgr97
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(Original post by 122025278)
There isn't really anything to say on your points about power in the judiciary, possibility of bribery, those points are totally moot as the same could be alleged of the police.

The rule of law does dictate equality before the law, but you're making a huge fallacy here. Firstly, MPs and Peers are already not equal before the law. They have many special privileges and rights that ordinary people do not have. Secondly, they would still face the same consequences for breaking the law as they do now. They would not be immune from any prosecution, even from arrest, if certain conditions are met. Thirdly, MPs and Peers hold an office, they are legislators. They are their to pass or block legislation, scrutinise the government and it's agencies (including the police).
I'm sorry, you're wrong. It's not open to abuse by police because even if the police were paid, the case would be dropped if there was no evidence. But a judge could be bribed to ensure a politician has no case to answer and therefore isn't arrested. This puts unecessary power in their hands!

The rule of law is the fundamental principle of British democracy - true, it's already been undermined by parliamentary priviledge, but that doesn't make it acceptable to go and undermine it even more. MPs are no different to the rest of us - just as I am a student so my job is to learn, if I do something illegal and can be arrested, so too that as MPs their job is to legislate, scrutinise etc., but if they do something illegal they should be arrested too. There is no difference. This creates a breed of super-elite politicians that are better than the rest of us.
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122025278
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(Original post by Welsh Bluebird)
It should then be the same for the normal person otherwise you're just widening the gap.
The fallacy you make is that MPs and Peers have different responsibilities than a normal person. They are there to jointly supervise the executive along with the judiciary. I'm saying they should be given immunity from arrest because of their office not because of who they are.
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