Alleged Offences (Diplomatic Immunity)
Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs
William Hague (Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs; Richmond (Yorks), Conservative)
In 2011, 13 serious offences allegedly committed by people entitled to diplomatic immunity were drawn to the attention of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Eight of these were driving-related. This is a decrease on the figures for 2010 (15 alleged offences, 12 driving-related). We define serious offences as those that could, in certain circumstances, carry a penalty of 12 months or more imprisonment. Also included are drink-driving and driving without insurance.
Some 22,500 people are entitled to diplomatic immunity in the United Kingdom and the majority of diplomats abide by UK law. The number of alleged serious crimes committed by the diplomatic community is proportionately low.
We take all allegations of illegal activity seriously. When instances of alleged criminal conduct are brought to our attention by the police, we ask the relevant foreign Government to waive diplomatic immunity where appropriate. For the most serious offences, we seek the immediate withdrawal of the diplomat.
Alleged offences reported to the FCO in 2011 are listed below.
|Driving under the influence of alcohol|
|Driving without insurance|
|Actual bodily harm|
|Equipped for burglary/Threatening behaviour|
|Equipped for burglary/robbery|
Figures for previous years are available in my written statement to the House on