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Summary

  1. The Commons day began at 11.30 GMT with Cabinet Office questions.
  2. At noon, the weekly prime minister's questions session took place.
  3. Following PMQs, Gareth Thomas introduced a ten minute rule bill on NHS and care sector workers getting access to a credit union.
  4. MPs concluded the report stage scrutiny of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill and gave the bill its third reading, sending it to the Lords.
  5. MPs held an opposition half-day debate on EU justice and home affairs measures, table by Labour to give MPs a chance to discuss the European Arrest Warrant.
  6. The adjournment debate was on human rights in Burma, led by Conservative MP David Burrowes.
  7. Peers' day started at 15.00 GMT with the daily half-hour question session.
  8. Peers then debated and passed the Infrastructure Bill at third reading, meaning it will now pass to the House of Commons.
  9. The main business of the day was report-stage examination of the Consumer Rights Bill.

Live Reporting

By Pippa Simm and Sam Francis

All times stated are UK

Goodbye for now

Lady Oppenheim-Barnes agrees to withdraw her amendment, bringing today's business in the House of Lords to a close.

Peers will return at 11.00 GMT tomorrow for their daily half-hour question session, while MPs meet a little earlier at 09.30 GMT.

We hope to see you then.

'Not the right way forward'

The amendment has the backing of the Labour front bench in the House of Lords - but not the government.

Business Minister Baroness Neville-Rolfe agrees that consumers should be educated about their rights and responsibilities.

However she is concerned that the mandatory approach offered by the amendment is not the right way forward, and warns that it would risk "overloading" consumers with information which they would then ignore.

The flexible, voluntary approach is a better solution, she argues.

Final amendment

We're on to the final amendment in tonight's debate, which is being proposed by Conservative peer Baroness Oppenheim-Barnes.

It would require the rights and responsibilities of consumers to be displayed at the point of sale, with Lady Oppenheim-Barnes citing statistics suggesting that 75% of all consumers are not aware of them.

What will the Consumer Rights Bill do?

The Consumer Rights Bill seeks to make consumers better informed and protected when they buy goods, services or digital content by formalising in law the standards a consumer can expect when making a purchase.

It will aim to clarify what action should be taken when those standards are not met and detail what information a seller must provide before a purchase is made.

Unnecessary amendment

Arguing against the amendment for the government, Baroness Jolly says the financial services sector is already subject to a "comprehensive" regulatory regime. She cannot see what the amendment would add to it.

She agrees that consumers "deserve a better deal" from banks, but argues that Labour's amendment "will not deliver it".

Baroness Hayter responds by maintaining the need for a change in the law, insisting that a culture change is needed in the banks.

She agrees to withdraw her amendment tonight but indicates that Labour will return to the issue at a later stage.

Amendments approved

All of the government's amendments are approved by peers without the need for a vote.

Over to Baroness Hayter of Kentish Town now, who is proposing an amendment on behalf of Labour which would ensure that financial services have a duty of care to their consumers.

She argues that the amendment is needed because banks do not always act in consumers' interest or treat customers fairly, and cites cases of recent fines for banks' behaviour to support her argument.

Baroness Hayter of Kentish Town
BBC

Government amendments

The next two groupings of amendments to be considered by peers also concern digital content.

They have been tabled by the government, who is being represented by Liberal Democrat Baroness Jolly.

Vote analysis

Earlier this evening the government was defeated over its Consumer Rights Bill as peers backed cross-party calls for stricter laws to tackle online ticket fraud.

Analysis of the vote by the Press Association shows there were 10 Tory rebels, including Lord Deben, Lord Grade, Lord Holmes and former Cabinet minister Lord Forsyth of Drumlean - as well as Lady Heyhoe Flint and Lord Moynihan, the movers of the amendment.

Eight Liberal Democrat peers also rebelled against the government, including Lord Clement-Jones.

The amendment also received the support of 129 Labour peers, 28 crossbenchers, two bishops and six others.

Digital content amendments

Lib Dem Lord Clement-Jones is explaining a series of amendments in his name which concern digital content.

The Consumer Rights Bill updates the law to introduce new protection for consumers who buy digital content, such as e-books, digital music, games and software.

Product recall

The amendment being discussed in the House of Lords concerns product safety and recall, and has been put forward by the Labour opposition.

Business Minister Baroness Neville-Rolfe announces that the government will set up an independent review of the product recall system, which is expected to report back within 12 months, and asks Labour to withdraw its amendment.

Baroness Hayter of Kentish Town, welcoming the announcement, agrees to do so.

Commons finishes for the day

Hugo Swire brings his comments to a close, concluding today's business in the House of Commons.

MPs will return tomorrow at 09.30 GMT with question to Business, Innovation and Skills Secretary Vince Cable and his ministerial team.

Do stay with us as the House of Lords continue its vital work providing report stage scrutiny of the Consumer Rights Bill.

Government response

Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire responds to the debate for the government.

He says the government "unapologetically supports Burma's transition" but human rights "remain firmly at the heart" of the UK's engagement with the country.

Being a "true friend to Burma means being an honest and sometime critical friend", Mr Swire adds.

'Free and fair'

David Burrowes calls on the government to be on the side of the people in Burma and ensure that Burma is "free and fair".

Stalled progress

Conservative MP David Burrowes says that despite progress the reform process in Burma has stalled and "in some respects reversed", noting that the Burmese army has been accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity in a four-year study conducted by Harvard University.

Adjournment debate

MPs now move on to the last of the day's business in the House of Commons: the adjournment debate, which is being led by Conservative MP David Burrowes on human rights in Burma.

Labour motion approved

MPs agree to the Labour motion, which "endorses the government's formal application to rejoin 35 European Union Justice and Home Affairs measures, including the European Arrest Warrant", by 421 votes to 29, a government majority of 392.

Opposition day motions such as this are not binding on the government and so will not affect legislation.

In this instance, however, the government has already agreed with the substance of the motion after taking

last week's vote to endorse 11 of the EU justice measures as a verdict on the package of 35 measures debated today.

Labour tabled the debate because it felt that MPs were not given a fair chance to vote on the controversial European Arrest Warrant.

Opposition day debates tend to be on subjects on which the opposition feels the government may be vulnerable.

Government defeat

The government is narrowly defeated in the House of Lords over Lord Moynihan's amendment on ticket touting.

Peers voted by 183 to 171 in favour of the proposal to require secondary ticketing websites to provide information concerning the sellers of tickets, so that they may be easily identified.

Lord Moynihan had argued that the change in the law would improve transparency and reduce ticketing fraud.

The government opposed the amendment but announced new steps to better enforce existing laws in a bid to address peers' concerns.

However, it was clearly not enough as the government was defeated by a majority of 12.

Division in the Lords

Lord Moynihan, dissatisfied with the government's position, says he has "no alternative" but to test the opinion of the House in a vote.

Peers rise from their seats and make their way to the voting lobbies to register their vote formally.

We should have the result at about 19.05 GMT.

Labour response

Shadow home affairs minister David Hanson responds to the debate for Labour.

He says that the debate has served an important purpose in allowing MPs to have their say on the European Arrest Warrant, after the "shambles" last week.

Mr Hanson says the motion allows the House to "send a strong message" that it supports the European Arrest Warrant before 1 December 2014, when the UK must notify that it intends to opt back in to the package of measures.

The warrant is about "co-operating with partners in Europe to ensure people who've committed serious crimes do not get away with it", he adds.

David Hanson
BBC

'Safe place' needed

Baroness Neville-Rolfe insists that the best way to protect fans from fraud is by ensuring they have a "safe place" to buy and sell tickets, warning that it would be "Christmas" for ticket touts if government regulations were to push the market underground.

Opposing the amendment, she says it would be a "much bigger burden" on traders and consumers than the status quo and, by requiring the seller to be named, could open the door to identity theft.

Unconvinced that legislation is the answer, the business minister announces instead a package of measures for better enforcement.

Habeus corpus

Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg says that the warrant is not necessary for extradition.

Safeguards put into the arrest warrant are unsecure, he says, as they can be overturned by the European Court of Justice.

This risks some of the things "we hold most dear in this country" including habeas corpus - a writ issued by those who believe they are being unlawfully detained so that they can be brought before a court of law so that the legality of the detention may be examined.

Government response

It is up to Business Minister Baroness Neville-Rolfe to respond to the debate and set out the government's position on the amendment.

Baroness Neville-Rolfe
BBC

UKIP position

UKIP MP Douglas Carswell says he will not back the measure, telling MPs his party is the only party to 100% endorse not rejoining the European Arrest Warrant.

While he agrees that the UK needs extradition and cross border co-operation, the EAW is a bad way of doing this, he says.

The warrant is based on a "fallacy" that different justice systems in the European Union are the same, and do not require an enquiry into the facts the warrants are based on, Mr Carswell agues.

He claims the new proportionality tests that the government secured in a reformed version of the warrant are not enough to ensure fairness, and that testing of evidence is needed to secure proper extradition.

Supporting a rejoining of the warrant undermines the government's credibility over claims to be against a federal Europe, he adds.

Douglas Carswell
BBC
UKIP's only MP Douglas Carswell sets out the party's opposition to the European Arrest Warrant

'Very serious problem'

Conservative peer and former BBC chairman Lord Grade of Yarmouth acknowledges there is a "very serious problem" of online ticket fraud, and that the law in this area is "deficient".

He hopes that the government will bring forward its own solution, if it opposes the amendment today.

Conservative consensus

Lord Stoneham's comments are endorsed by Conservative peer and former coalition business minister Viscount Younger of Leckie.

He suggests that a voluntary approach with improved guidance and "better point-of-sale electronic means to control ticketing", is the way forward.

Meanwhile, fellow Tory Lord Borwick believes the amendments are designed to allow sports grounds to cancel tickets not sold by them.

'Useful service'

The first argument against the proposal comes from Lord Stoneham of Droxford, who says it is "misguided" to think you can end fraud by increasing regulation.

Defending the secondary ticketing market, the Lib Dem peer asserts that it provides a "useful service" for consumers.

We should be supporting recognised and established secondary ticket platforms who "can help us to undermine the bad sellers, the touts if you like", he argues.

Warrant praised

Labour MP Mike Gapes says that of the 4,000 criminals arrested in the UK under the European Arrest Warrant, 95% are foreign nationals.

"This is a mechanism to get bad people out of our country, put on trial and convicted," he says.

Closer relationships with the European Union and immigration from European countries greatly benefits the UK, he says.

Interruption

A mobile phone can be heard ringing in the chamber (House rules dictate that they must be on silent).

On hearing the noise, Conservative peer Lord Deben - the current speaker - confirms "No, it is not me."

He too gives his backing to the amendment.

'Bowing the knee'

Chair of the European Scrutiny Committee Bill Cash says he will be voting against today's motion and complains that the procedure around European measures deprives Parliament of properly scrutinising proposals.

Mr Cash says he cannot support the warrant as he puts the issue of miscarriages of justice ahead of the other problems the arrest warrant deals with.

Voting for the European Arrest Warrant will mean the UK is "bowing the knee to European dogma", he adds.

Target frauds

Lord Clement-Jones provides another voice in support of the amendment.

Speaking from the Lib Dem benches, the peer says it would not inhibit legitimate exchanges of tickets on secondary ticketing websites, but target those who "use the lack of transparency to lead or defraud consumers".

Existing regulations 'ineffectual'

Fellow Conservative peer Baroness Heyhoe Flint argues that existing regulations are ineffectual in preventing and tackling ticket fraud.

Lady Heyhoe Flint - a former test cricketer - is a co-signatory of the amendment, which she insists places very little burden on the seller and empowers consumers with greater information about the tickets they are seeking to buy.

Support for ticket move

Lord Moynihan
BBC
Lord Moynihan tells peers his proposal is supported by all the major sports governing bodies, from the Lawn Tennis Association to the Rugby Football Union.

Vote 'a surreal comedy'

SNP MP Peter Wishart says that many of his constituents thought the vote last week was "a surreal comedy" like Monty Python.

Mr Wishart blames the Conservative party's "obsession" with European exit for taking the UK to the very point of withdrawing from a process that "ensures the effective transfer of criminals to face justice".

Support from across the House

Lord Moynihan agrees on the need for a secondary ticketing market - but insists it must be regulated and transparent.

His amendment would require secondary ticketing operators to provide on the website on which tickets are offered for sale or transfer, information concerning the sellers of tickets so that they may easily be identified.

This would give consumers the information they need to check the validity of the ticket, he argues, and this "substantially reduce" fraudulent activity.

The amendment has the support of former cricket star and Tory peer Baroness Heyhoe Flint, Liberal Democrat Lord Clement-Jones and opposition front bencher Lord Stevenson of Balmacara.

Ticket touting problems

Lord Moynihan, former Conservative sports minister and ex-chairman of the British Olympic Association, is moving the amendment.

Setting out the scale of the problem, he tells peers that online ticket fraud costs about £1.5bn, affecting an estimated 2.3 million people in the UK each year.

Lord Moynihan
BBC

EAW detractor

Conservative MP Dominic Raab, a vocal critic of the European Arrest Warrant, highlights the case of his own constituent: retired judge Colin Dines, who had a warrant issued against him by Italian magistrates investigating a £344m money laundering operation, allegedly masterminded by the Mafia, in 2010.

Mr Dines has "languished under the threat" of prison for the last four and half years, despite the fact he has never been offered an opportunity to prove his own innocence and despite the key Italian suspects all being acquitted a long time ago.

The warrant has cost the Dines family "an enormous sum of money" and contributed to a stroke suffered by Mr Dines only days before he was due to be surrendered to Italian courts.

The case, Mr Raab says, brings "shame on British justice" and the "scatter gun approach" of EAWs devastates the lives of too many innocent people.

Tackling ticket touting

Remember that cross-party amendment on ticket touting we mentioned earlier? It's being debated in the Lords now.

It aims to strengthen regulations on ticket touting to provide better protection to consumers.

Particular problems that the cross-party group of peers want to tackle include:

  • tickets being advertised and sold online before they've been released
  • tickets being sold well above their face value
  • fans buying non-transferrable tickets which do not guarantee them entry to the ground.

Co-operation in the Upper House

There's a very conciliatory mood in the Lords chamber during this Consumer Rights Bill debate.

Labour says it will not push the current grouping of amendments to a vote as the government's concessions - also in the grouping - cover everything the opposition requested at committee stage.

What is the European Arrest Warrant?

The

European Arrest Warrant (EAW) operates EU-wide and replaced separate extradition arrangements between the EU member states.

A national judicial authority, such as a court, can issue an EAW to get a suspect extradited from countries that have signed up to the warrant.

For an EAW to be valid, the suspect must be accused of an offence incurring a maximum penalty of at least a year in prison, or must have been already sentenced to at least four months in prison.

The EAW was introduced in January 2004, and was prompted by the international anti-terror drive after the 11 September 2001 attacks on the US.

The EAW means faster and simpler surrender procedures for suspects. EU states can not refuse to extradite one of their citizens on grounds of nationality; and extradition no longer requires a political decision for a suspect to be handed over.

The EAW also encompasses mutual recognition of criminal justice systems in the EU.

EU justice measures

The government

opted out of all 133 EU police and criminal justice measures measures in 2013, a decision that will take effect on 1 December.

However, ministers plan to rejoin 35 of the measures, including the European Arrest Warrant, before that deadline.

Supporters, including the government and law enforcement agencies, say the warrant is a vital tool to protect the UK and bring criminals to justice across EU borders.

However, critics - including some Conservative MPs - say the European Arrest Warrant is overused and a threat to the liberties of Britons and the sovereignty of the UK.