'Tailored plan' for terror suspects
11:23am Saturday 18th January 2014 in © Press Association 2014
Police and MI5 will put "tailored plans" in place to manage the risks posed by terror suspects when existing supervision measures expire later this month, the Home Office has insisted
The orders have a two-year time limit and the Daily Telegraph reported that restrictions are due to be lifted on seven suspects, who would be granted lifetime anonymity to protect their human rights.
Terrorism prevention and investigation measures (Tpims), which include restrictions on overnight residence, travel and finance, are imposed by the Home Secretary, who is given access to secret evidence that cannot be placed before juries.
Unlike the control order regime they replaced they have a maximum time limit of two years. Control orders could be extended year on year without limit, while Tpims can be extended only after a year for another 12 months before they expire.
By January 26 the controls on seven of the eight people subject to Tpims will have expired because of the time limit, which can be extended only if new evidence of terror activity is found, the newspaper reported.
Last year David Anderson, the independent reviewer of terrorism legislation, said the Tpims on six suspects would expire this month.
The Home Office said as of November 30 last year eight Tpim notices were in force but they would not provide a "running commentary" on the issue or comment on individual cases, and the next official statistics on the regime would be published in March.
Security Minister James Brokenshire said: "The police and Security Service believe Tpims have been effective in reducing the national security risk posed by a number of individuals. However, they are just one weapon in the considerable armoury at their disposal and are imposed as part of a package of measures designed to disrupt a person's activities.
"It is not possible to discuss individual cases, but the police and Security Service have been working for some time to put tailored plans in place to manage the risk posed by these individuals once their Tpim restrictions are removed. These plans, which are similar to those put in place for the release of prisoners who have served their sentences, are kept under constant review."
But shadow crime and security minister Diana Johnson told the newspaper: " The Government needs to explain what the plan is to deal with the extremist terror suspects whose Tpims run out at the end of January because of Theresa May's decision to downgrade terror laws.
"These are suspects that only this year the Home Secretary was arguing were too dangerous to be left uncontrolled and that was agreed to by judges.
"We need an urgent independent threat assessment of whether Tpims on any of the January suspects needs to be extended. If Theresa May won't do this, the Prime Minister needs to instead."
Keith Vaz, Labour chairman of the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee, added: "It would be odd to have a situation where anonymity remains in place even though these orders have expired.
"It would be sensible to have a review of this situation."
Liberty director Shami Chakrabarti said: "The nonsense of these 'anti-terror asbos' is once more exposed. Innocent people can be punished for long periods without charge or trial, whilst dangerous ones live in the community and not behind bars.
"This sloppy law, in which all the main parties have been complicit, serves neither justice nor security and should now be scrapped once and for all."