Bishops fear owning a Bible could be hate crime offence under new Scots law

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The Catholic Church has become the latest organisation to raise its concerns about controversial reforms in the Scottish Government’s new Hate Crime Bill.

It has made a submission to MSPs on Holyrood’s justice committee, who have been tasked with scrutinising the reforms. The Bishops’ Conference of Scotland said: “Any new law must be carefully weighed against fundamental freedoms, such as the right to free speech, freedom of
expression and freedom of thought, conscience and religion.” With section five of the legislation creating an offence of possessing inflammatory material, they fear the “low threshold” in the proposed new laws “could render material such as the Bible….