My colleague, Edward McMillan-Scott, and I have written the following letter to the papers in the region on the issue of the European Arrest Warrant.
Dear Sir or Madam,
Readers may well be aware of the recent conviction of Jeremy Forrest of child
abduction by a court in Lewes. Mr Forrest, a married maths teacher, fled to France
with a 15-year-old pupil , leading to an international police hunt. This terrible case,
involving a child, demonstrates for all concerned the importance of the European Arrest
Warrant. It was this tool that enabled Mr Forrest to be so swiftly extradited back to
Britain face criminal proceedings. It also goes to show the importance of being able
to work across borders to tackle such important issues and crime and safety.
The European Arrest Warrant is not only used in cases such as this, but also those
as varied as human trafficking, terrorism and murder. Some of the gravest of crimes
with the most dangerous of criminals – brought to justice thanks to the European Arrest
It concerns us greatly, then, that there are still those within the Conservative Party
who would seek to scrap British involvement with the EAW, despite the fact the Police
want to see this power remain. We fear this would put many young people in society
at great risk of crimes including human trafficking and make society a less safe place
in general. This must not be allowed to happen. As Liberal Democrats, we are
campaigning vigorously against the Conservative optout plan so that the police can
continue to have access to the tools they need to bring criminals like Jeremy Forrest
to justice and keep the public safe.
Edward McMillan-Scott MEP Rebecca Taylor MEP
Lib Dem MEP for Yorkshire and the Humber Lib Dem MEP for Yorkshire and the Humber