Theresa May’s opt-out mess

Stephen Booth of Open Europe was alone in defending the UK government’s plan to opt out of 130 EU police and judicial measure at a Law Society debate last week. Even he pointed to the list of 60 measures of ‘practical value’ to the UK compiled by prominent Tory eurosceptic Dominic Raab. These include the instruments governing Europol, Eurojust and even the oft-maligned European Arrest Warrant.

Professor John Spencer, author of a Cambridge University paper on this topic, hit back at some of the arguments being made in favour of the opt out. He first pointed to the letter to the Telegraphin January 2012, signed by 102 Tory MPs and calling for a mass opt out. Of the three measures mentioned in the letter – the European Public Prosecutor, the European Investigation Order and the European Arrest Warrant – only the third is even covered by the opt out. Continue reading