Are all European legal systems fair, independent and equal to our own?

To ask the question, is to answer it.

We are quite extremely fortunate in this country to have a very trustworthy independent Judiciary and Polices Forces, that are civilian in nature, very reluctant to use violence and steeped in the principles of Sir Robert Peel. All of this has evolved over hundreds of years, long before we had full democracy. I keep thinking about this article by Stephen Pollard – The case that shows why we must not stay in the European Arrest Warrant – and I can’t fault it.

So that was why I was happy to lend the name of the EPC to this publication “Why the UK should Reform or Exit the European Arrest Warrant: Problems and Excesses of the Romanian Anti­-Corruption Fight”, published by The Hampden Trust in association with the Economic Policy Centre and The Freedom Association.

As the United Kingdom negotiates Brexit and the complex issues that surround legal separation, this report makes an important contribution to the debate by pointing out that not all EU national legal systems are equal in standing or fit for ongoing arrangements of reciprocity in areas such as extradition.

Focusing on Romania and others in the region, this report points out that there is often a persistent and unacceptable lack of separation between the institutions of politics, the economy, and the secret state in countries such as Romania.

In judging Romania’s quest for anti­-corruption in recent years, three key international measures ­ the Legatum Institute’s Prosperity Index 2015, the Fraser Institute’s Economic Freedom of the World Report 2015, and the Heritage Foundation’s 2016 Index of Economic Freedom – all suggest that a new approach is urgently required.

Illustrating that the UK should not ignore non-economic issues relevant to business in its renegotiation with the EU, the report is supported by numerous Parliamentarians including Lords Vinson, Stoddart and Swinfen, as well as Sammy Wilson MP and others such as Alex Deane CC, Dr. Adrian Hilton PhD and the Rev Dr. Peter Mullen PhD.

My general view is that Brexit should be about pursuing flexible, quicker to agree, bilateral arrangements in trade, diplomacy and the law. And reconsidering the EAW on a country by country basis has to be considered as part of that.

NB: The Economic Policy Centre, The Freedom Association and The Hampden Trust do not endorse and / or are liable for the contents