Coroners and Justice Bill — Clause 45 — Sexual infidelity as a partial defence to a muder charge. — 9 Nov 2009 at 20:00

The majority of MPs agreed that sexual infidelity, sexual jealousy or envy ought not count as a "qualifying trigger" allowing a partial defence against a charge of murder on the grounds of "loss of control". Government minister, Clare Ward, explained there was a need to make this explicit in the act as some courts had found sexual infidelity was a sufficient provocation to allow murder to be reduced to manslaughter and it the government found this unacceptable.[1] Conservative opposition members Ann Widdecombe and Dominic Grieve argued the decision should be left to juries.[2]

The House of Lords had made amendment 55 which was to leave out amendment section (c) completely. [2] The original section (c), which the Lords had wanted to leave out of the bill completely stated:

The fact that a thing done or said constituted sexual infidelity is to be disregarded.
All Liberal Democrats, with the exception of Mike Hancock MP, abstained from the vote. Liberal Democrat David Howarth, MP for Cambridge, had tabled the following amendment in lieu of the Lords' amendment[3]:— (a) Page 29, line 19, leave out paragraph (c) and insert—
‘(c) where D acted principally out of a desire to punish V for any act, whether by V or by any other person, which D perceived at the time to amount to sexual infidelity, or where D acted principally out of sexual jealousy or envy, the circumstances shall not constitute “circumstances of an extremely grave character” for the purposes of subsection (4)(a).’.
It appears the Liberal Democrats abstained because they wanted an outcome not in line with either of the options on offer.

The House divided: Ayes 299, Noes 145.

  • 1. Claire Ward, House of Commons 9th November 2009
  • 2. House of Commons Debate
  • 3. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200809/cmbills/160/amend/pbc1600911m.1543-1549.html
  • 4. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld200809/ldbills/033/2009033.pdf, Bill as brought from the Commons 26.03.09

    Debate in Parliament | Source |

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    Adam AfriyieWindsorConno
    Peter AinsworthEast SurreyConno
    Sir David AmessSouthend WestConno
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    Peter AtkinsonHexhamConno
    Tony BaldryBanburyConno
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    Philip DaviesShipleyConno
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    Michael FabricantLichfieldConno
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    Edward GarnierHarboroughConno
    David GaukeSouth West HertfordshireConno
    Nick GibbBognor Regis and LittlehamptonConno
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    Philip HolloboneKetteringConno
    Adam HollowayGraveshamConno
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    Nick HurdRuislip - NorthwoodConno
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    Bernard JenkinNorth EssexConno
    Daniel KawczynskiShrewsbury and AtchamConno
    Robert KeySalisburyConno
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    Tim LoughtonEast Worthing and ShorehamConno
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    Anne MainSt AlbansConno
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    Patrick McLoughlinWest DerbyshireConno
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    Bob NeillBromley and ChislehurstConno
    Brooks NewmarkBraintreeConno
    Stephen O'BrienEddisburyConno
    Mike PenningHemel HempsteadConno
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    Mark PritchardThe WrekinConno
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    Hugh RobertsonFaversham and Mid KentConno
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    Michael SpicerWest WorcestershireConno
    John StanleyTonbridge and MallingConno
    Anthony SteenTotnesConno
    Gary StreeterSouth West DevonConno
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    Robert SymsPooleConno
    Ian TaylorEsher and WaltonConno
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    Andrew TurnerIsle of WightConno
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    Ed VaizeyWantageConno
    Shailesh VaraNorth West CambridgeshireConno
    Peter ViggersGosportConno
    Charles WalkerBroxbourneConno
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    Robert WalterNorth DorsetConno
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    Angela WatkinsonUpminsterConno
    John WhittingdaleMaldon and East ChelmsfordConno
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    Jim CousinsNewcastle upon Tyne CentralLabaye
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    Jon CruddasDagenhamLabaye
    Ann CryerKeighleyLabaye
    John CummingsEasingtonLabaye
    Jim CunninghamCoventry SouthLabaye
    Tony CunninghamWorkingtonLabaye
    Claire Curtis-ThomasCrosbyLabaye
    Wayne DavidCaerphillyLabaye
    Quentin DaviesGrantham and Stamfordwhilst Labaye
    Janet DeanBurtonLabaye
    John DenhamSouthampton, ItchenLabaye
    Parmjit DhandaGloucesterLabaye
    Andrew DismoreHendonLabaye
    Jim DobbinHeywood and MiddletonLabaye
    Frank DobsonHolborn and St PancrasLabaye
    Brian H DonohoeCentral AyrshireLabaye
    Frank DoranAberdeen NorthLabaye
    David DrewStroudLabaye
    Angela EagleWallaseyLabaye
    Maria EagleLiverpool, GarstonLabaye
    Louise EllmanLiverpool, RiversideLabaye
    Natascha EngelNorth East DerbyshireLabaye
    Jeff EnnisBarnsley East and MexboroughLabaye
    Bill EtheringtonSunderland NorthLabaye
    Paul FarrellyNewcastle-under-LymeLabaye
    Mark FisherStoke-on-Trent CentralLabaye
    Jim FitzpatrickPoplar and Canning TownLabaye
    Rob FlelloStoke-on-Trent SouthLabaye
    Caroline FlintDon ValleyLabaye
    Paul FlynnNewport WestLabaye
    Barbara FollettStevenageLabaye
    Michael FosterWorcesterLabaye
    Michael Jabez FosterHastings and RyeLabaye
    Hywel FrancisAberavonLabaye
    Mike GapesIlford SouthLabaye
    Barry GardinerBrent NorthLabaye
    Bruce GeorgeWalsall SouthLabaye
    Neil GerrardWalthamstowLabaye
    Linda GilroyPlymouth, SuttonLabaye
    Roger GodsiffBirmingham, Sparkbrook and Small HeathLabaye
    Paul GogginsWythenshawe and Sale EastLabaye
    Helen GoodmanBishop AucklandLabaye
    Nia GriffithLlanelliLabaye
    Nigel GriffithsEdinburgh SouthLabaye
    John GroganSelbyLabaye
    Andrew GwynneDenton and ReddishLabaye
    Peter HainNeathLabaye
    Mike HallWeaver ValeLabaye
    Patrick HallBedfordLabaye
    David HamiltonMidlothianLabaye
    David HansonDelynLabaye
    Harriet HarmanCamberwell and PeckhamLabaye
    Dai HavardMerthyr Tydfil and RhymneyLabaye
    John HealeyWentworthLabaye
    Doug HendersonNewcastle upon Tyne NorthLabaye
    Mark HendrickPrestonLabaye
    Stephen HepburnJarrowLabaye
    John HeppellNottingham EastLabtellaye
    Stephen HesfordWirral WestLabaye
    Patricia HewittLeicester WestLabaye
    David HeyesAshton-under-LyneLabaye
    Keith HillStreathamLabaye
    Meg HillierHackney South and ShoreditchLabaye
    Margaret HodgeBarkingLabaye
    Sharon HodgsonGateshead East and Washington WestLabaye
    Jimmy HoodLanark and Hamilton EastLabaye
    Geoff HoonAshfieldLabaye
    Phil HopeCorbyLabaye
    Kelvin HopkinsLuton NorthLabaye
    George HowarthKnowsley North and Sefton EastLabaye
    Kim HowellsPontypriddLabaye
    Lindsay HoyleChorleyLabaye
    Joan HumbleBlackpool North and FleetwoodLabaye
    John HuttonBarrow and FurnessLabaye
    Brian IddonBolton South EastLabaye
    Eric IllsleyBarnsley CentralLabaye
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    Huw Irranca-DaviesOgmoreLabaye
    Glenda JacksonHampstead and HighgateLabaye
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    Brian JenkinsTamworthLabaye
    Alan JohnsonKingston upon Hull West and HessleLabaye
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    Helen JonesWarrington NorthLabaye
    Kevan JonesNorth DurhamLabaye
    Lynne JonesBirmingham, Selly OakLabaye
    Tessa JowellDulwich and West NorwoodLabaye
    Eric JoyceFalkirkLabaye
    Gerald KaufmanManchester, GortonLabaye
    Sally KeebleNorthampton NorthLabaye
    Barbara KeeleyWorsleyLabaye
    Alan KeenFeltham and HestonLabaye
    Fraser KempHoughton and Washington EastLabaye
    Sadiq KhanTootingLabaye
    David KidneyStaffordLabaye
    Peter KilfoyleLiverpool, WaltonLabaye
    Jim KnightSouth DorsetLabaye
    Ashok KumarMiddlesbrough South and East ClevelandLabaye
    Stephen LadymanSouth ThanetLabaye
    David LammyTottenhamLabaye
    Bob LaxtonDerby NorthLabaye
    David LepperBrighton, PavilionLabaye
    Tom LevittHigh PeakLabaye
    Ivan LewisBury SouthLabaye
    Martin LintonBatterseaLabaye
    Tony LloydManchester CentralLabaye
    Andrew LoveEdmontonLabaye
    Ian LucasWrexhamLabaye
    Andrew MacKinlayThurrockLabaye
    Denis MacShaneRotherhamLabaye
    Fiona MactaggartSloughLabaye
    Shahid MalikDewsburyLabaye
    Judy MallaberAmber ValleyLabaye
    John MannBassetlawLabaye
    Rob MarrisWolverhampton South WestLabaye
    Gordon MarsdenBlackpool SouthLabaye
    Thomas McAvoyRutherglen and Hamilton WestLabaye
    Steve McCabeBirmingham, Hall GreenLabaye
    Chris McCaffertyCalder ValleyLabaye
    Kerry McCarthyBristol EastLabaye
    Sarah McCarthy-FryPortsmouth NorthLabaye
    Siobhain McDonaghMitcham and MordenLabaye
    Pat McFaddenWolverhampton South EastLabaye
    John McFallWest DunbartonshireLabaye
    Anne McGuireStirlingLabaye
    Ann McKechinGlasgow NorthLabaye
    Rosemary McKennaCumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch EastLabaye
    Tony McNultyHarrow EastLabaye
    Michael MeacherOldham West and RoytonLabaye
    Alan MealeMansfieldLabaye
    Gillian MerronLincolnLabaye
    Alun MichaelCardiff South and PenarthLabaye
    Andrew MillerEllesmere Port and NestonLabaye
    Austin MitchellGreat GrimsbyLabaye
    Laura MoffattCrawleyLabaye
    Chris MoleIpswichLabaye
    Madeleine MoonBridgendLabaye
    Jessica MordenNewport EastLabaye
    Julie MorganCardiff NorthLabaye
    Elliot MorleyScunthorpeLabaye
    George MudieLeeds EastLabaye
    Chris MullinSunderland SouthLabaye
    Meg MunnSheffield, HeeleyLabaye
    Denis MurphyWansbeckLabaye
    Jim MurphyEast RenfrewshireLabaye
    Paul MurphyTorfaenLabaye
    Doug NaysmithBristol North WestLabaye
    Dan NorrisWansdykeLabaye
    Edward O'HaraKnowsley SouthLabaye
    Bill OlnerNuneatonLabaye
    Sandra OsborneAyr, Carrick and CumnockLabaye
    Albert OwenYnys MônLabaye
    Nick PalmerBroxtoweLabaye
    Ian PearsonDudley SouthLabaye
    James PlaskittWarwick and LeamingtonLabaye
    Greg PopeHyndburnLabaye
    Bridget PrenticeLewisham EastLabaye
    Gordon PrenticePendleLabaye
    John PrescottKingston upon Hull EastLabaye
    Dawn PrimaroloBristol SouthLabaye
    Gwyn ProsserDoverLabaye
    Ken PurchaseWolverhampton North EastLabaye
    James PurnellStalybridge and HydeLabaye
    Bill RammellHarlowLabaye
    Nick RaynsfordGreenwich and WoolwichLabaye
    Andy ReedLoughboroughLabaye
    Jamie ReedCopelandLabaye
    John ReidAirdrie and ShottsLabaye
    Linda RiordanHalifaxLabaye
    John RobertsonGlasgow North WestLabaye
    Geoffrey RobinsonCoventry North WestLabaye
    Terry RooneyBradford NorthLabaye
    Lindsay RoyGlenrothesLabaye
    Chris RuaneVale of ClwydLabaye
    Joan RuddockLewisham, DeptfordLabaye
    Christine RussellCity of ChesterLabaye
    Joan RyanEnfield NorthLabaye
    Martin SalterReading WestLabaye
    Alison SeabeckPlymouth, DevonportLabaye
    Virendra SharmaEaling, SouthallLabaye
    Jonathan R ShawChatham and AylesfordLabaye
    Barry SheermanHuddersfieldLabaye
    Jim SheridanPaisley and Renfrewshire NorthLabaye
    Siôn SimonBirmingham, ErdingtonLabaye
    Marsha SinghBradford WestLabaye
    Dennis SkinnerBolsoverLabaye
    Andrew SlaughterEaling, Acton and Shepherd's BushLabaye
    Andrew SmithOxford EastLabaye
    Angela SmithBasildonLabaye
    Angela SmithSheffield, HillsboroughLabaye
    Geraldine SmithMorecambe and LunesdaleLabaye
    Jacqui SmithRedditchLabaye
    Anne SnelgroveSouth SwindonLabaye
    Helen SouthworthWarrington SouthLabaye
    John SpellarWarleyLabaye
    Phyllis StarkeyMilton Keynes South WestLabaye
    Ian StewartEcclesLabaye
    Howard StoateDartfordLabaye
    Jack StrawBlackburnLabaye
    Graham StringerManchester, BlackleyLabaye
    Gisela StuartBirmingham, EdgbastonLabaye
    Gerry SutcliffeBradford SouthLabaye
    Mark TamiAlyn and DeesideLabaye
    Dari TaylorStockton SouthLabaye
    David TaylorNorth West LeicestershireLabaye
    Gareth ThomasHarrow WestLabaye
    Stephen TimmsEast HamLabaye
    Mark ToddSouth DerbyshireLabaye
    Don TouhigIslwynLabaye
    Jon TrickettHemsworthLabaye
    Paul TruswellPudseyLabaye
    Desmond TurnerBrighton, KemptownLabaye
    Neil TurnerWiganLabaye
    Derek TwiggHaltonLabaye
    Kitty UssherBurnleyLabaye
    Rudi VisFinchley and Golders GreenLabaye
    Joan WalleyStoke-on-Trent NorthLabaye
    Lynda WalthoStourbridgeLabaye
    Claire WardWatfordLabaye
    Tom WatsonWest Bromwich EastLabaye
    Dave WattsSt Helens NorthLabaye
    Alan WhiteheadSouthampton, TestLabaye
    Malcolm WicksCroydon NorthLabaye
    Alan WilliamsSwansea WestLabaye
    Betty WilliamsConwyLabaye
    Michael WillsNorth SwindonLabaye
    Phil WilsonSedgefieldLabaye
    David WinnickWalsall NorthLabaye
    Rosie WintertonDoncaster CentralLabaye
    Phil WoolasOldham East and SaddleworthLabaye
    David WrightTelfordLabaye
    Tony WrightCannock ChaseLabaye
    Derek WyattSittingbourne and SheppeyLabaye
    Vincent CableTwickenhamLDemno
    Mike HancockPortsmouth SouthLDemboth
    Richard Younger-RossTeignbridgeLDemboth
    Elfyn LlwydMeirionnydd Nant ConwyPCno
    Adam PriceCarmarthen East and DinefwrPCno
    Hywel WilliamsCaernarfonPCno
    Mark DurkanFoyleSDLPaye

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