Criminal Justice (International Co-Operation) Act 2019

Publication Date:January 01, 2019
 
FREE EXCERPT


Criminal Justice (International Co-Operation) Act 2019

2019 27

An Act to provide for the taking of evidence in the State from a member of the Garda Síochána for the purposes of certain inquests and inquiries held in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; to permit the Garda Síochána to enter into agreements for co-operation with certain persons or bodies outside the State; to permit the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission to enter into agreements for co-operation with law enforcement agencies or certain other persons or bodies outside the State; and for those purposes and other purposes, to amend the Garda Síochána Act 2005; to amend the European Arrest Warrant Act 2003; to amend the Criminal Justice (Mutual Assistance) Act 2008; and to provide for related matters.

[23 July 2019]

Be it enacted by the Oireachtas as follows:

S-1 Definitions

1 Definitions

1. In this Act—

“Act of 2005” means the Garda Síochána Act 2005;

“designated United Kingdom inquest” means an inquest or inquiry that has been designated undersection 2;

“Garda Commissioner” means the Commissioner of the Garda Síochána;

“legal representative” means a practising solicitor or a practising barrister;

“Minister” means the Minister for Justice and Equality;

“Northern Ireland troubles related inquest” means an inquest that is being held under the law of Northern Ireland into the death of any person in Northern Ireland that occurred or may have occurred as a result of an act of violence or force carried out during the period beginning on 1 January 1966 and ending on 10 April 1998—

(a) for reasons connected with the constitutional position of, or political or sectarian hostility in, Northern Ireland, or

(b) in connection with the prevention, detection or investigation of offences connected with the reasons referred to inparagraph (a).

S-2 Designation of United Kingdom inquest

2 Designation of United Kingdom inquest

(1) The Minister may, for the purposes of section 3 and subject to subsection (2), designate in writing an inquest or inquiry that is being held under the law of England and Wales, of Scotland or of Northern Ireland (other than a Northern Ireland troubles related inquest) into the death of any person as a designated United Kingdom inquest.

(2) The Minister may make a designation under subsection (1) if, after consultation with the Garda Commissioner, the Minister is satisfied that there has been co-operation between the Garda Síochána and a police force or other law enforcement agency established under the law of the United Kingdom or of any part of the United Kingdom, in respect of the investigation into the death to which the inquest or inquiry relates.

(3) As soon as practicable after making a designation under subsection (1), the Minister shall cause a copy of the designation to be laid before each House of the Oireachtas.

S-3 Taking evidence in State from member of Garda Síochána for purposes of Northern Ireland troubles related inquest or designated United Kingdom inquest

3 Taking evidence in State from member of Garda Síochána for purposes of Northern Ireland troubles related inquest or designated United Kingdom inquest

(1) This section shall apply where a coroner holding a Northern Ireland troubles related inquest or a designated United Kingdom inquest makes a request to the Garda Commissioner for assistance, in the form of the taking of evidence in the State from a member of the Garda Síochána in accordance with this section, for the purposes of the inquest concerned (in this section referred to as a “request for assistance”).

(2) A request for assistance shall be in writing and shall specify—

(a)

the questions that the coroner requests be asked of a member of the Garda Síochána in the taking of evidence in accordance with this section, and

(b)

the purpose for which the evidence is requested.

(3) Subject to subsection (4), the Garda Commissioner may accede to a request for assistance in respect of some or all of the questions specified therein.

(4) The Garda Commissioner shall, after consultation with the Minister, refuse a request for assistance in respect of some or all of the questions specified therein, where the Garda Commissioner is of the opinion that to accede to the request for assistance in respect of those questions would—

(a)

be likely to prejudice the sovereignty, security or other essential interests of the State,

(b)

be likely to prejudice a criminal investigation, or criminal proceedings, in the State, or

(c)

otherwise be inconsistent with the functions of the Garda Síochána under section 7 of the Act of 2005.

(5) A decision of the Garda Commissioner under subsection (3) in relation to a request for assistance shall be in writing and shall specify—

(a)

the questions, if any, in respect of which the Garda Commissioner is acceding to the request for assistance, and

(b)

the questions, if any, in respect of which the Garda Commissioner is refusing the request for assistance.

(6) The Garda Commissioner shall, as soon as practicable after making a decision under subsection (3), provide a copy of the decision to the coroner who made the request for assistance and notify him or her in writing—

(a)

in relation to the questions specified in the decision to whichsubsection (5)(a) applies, that the evidence concerned—

(i) shall be taken in accordance with this section,

(ii) shall be given in accordance with this section by a designated member of the Garda Síochána, and

(iii) shall be provided to the coroner subject to the condition referred to insubsection (13),

and

(b)

in relation to the questions specified in the decision to whichsubsection (5)(b) applies, that the request for assistance is, in respect of those questions, refused.

(7) Where the Garda Commissioner accedes to a request for assistance in respect of some or all of the questions specified therein, he or she shall—

(a)

designate a member of the Garda Síochána not below the rank of Chief Superintendent (in this section referred to as a “designated member of the Garda Síochána”) as the member of the Garda Síochána from whom the evidence concerned may be taken in accordance with this section, and

(b)

make an application to the President of the High Court for the nomination of a judge of that Court (in this section referred to as the “nominated judge”) to take the evidence concerned in accordance with this section, which application shall be accompanied by a copy of—

(i) the request for assistance,

(ii) the decision of the Garda Commissioner undersubsection (3), and

(iii) the notification undersubsection (6).

(8) The nominated judge shall take the evidence referred to in subsection (7) in accordance with this section.

(9) For the purposes of subsection (8)

(a)

no person other than the nominated judge shall ask questions of the designated member of the Garda Síochána,

(b)

the nominated judge shall ask the designated member of the Garda Síochána the questions specified in the decision undersubsection (3) to which subsection (5)(a) applies only,

(c)

the evidence shall be taken—

(i) on oath, and

(ii) subject tosubsection (10), otherwise than in public,

and

(d)

the nominated judge may give such directions in relation to the arrangements for the taking of the evidence as he or she considers appropriate, including directions for the purpose of securing the safety of the designated member of the Garda Síochána from whom the evidence is to be taken.

(10) The taking of evidence under subsection (8) may be done in the presence of—

(a)

the coroner who made the request for assistance or his or her legal representative, and

(b)

the Garda Commissioner or his or her legal representative.

(11) For the purpose of giving evidence under subsection (8), a designated member of the Garda Síochána—

(a)

shall not be compelled to give any evidence which he or she could not be compelled to give in criminal proceedings in the State, and

(b)

shall be entitled to the immunities and privileges of a witness before the High Court.

(12) After the taking of the evidence under subsection (8), the nominated judge shall—

(a)

certify the record of the evidence as a true copy of the evidence taken, and

(b)

cause a copy of the record of the evidence so certified to be transmitted to—

(i) the coroner concerned, and

(ii) the Garda Commissioner.

(13) The provision of evidence to a coroner under this section shall be subject to the condition that it shall not, without the consent of the Garda Commissioner, be used for any purpose other than the purpose specified by the coroner in accordance with subsection (2)(b) in his or her request for assistance.

(14) This section applies to a Northern Ireland troubles related inquest and a designated United Kingdom inquest that—

(a)

has begun but has not been completed before the coming into operation of this section, or

(...

To continue reading

REQUEST YOUR TRIAL