Royal Mail Investigation Branch

Trade and Industry written question – answered on 25th February 2003.

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Photo of Desmond Swayne Desmond Swayne Opposition Whip (Commons)

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will make a statement on the future of the powers of entry, search and arrest employed by the investigation branch of the Royal Mail.

Photo of Stephen Timms Stephen Timms Minister of State (e-Commerce & Competitiveness)

Responsibility for enforcement policy for criminal offences under the Postal Services Act 2000 (the Act) is a matter for the Postal Services Commission (PostComm) who on 10 January 2003 published a decision document and statement of policy on these matters. Under the terms of its policy PostComm would look to Royal Mail to take the necessary enforcement action where offences are committed in relation to its postal services under Sections 83–88 of the Act.

Royal Mail is recognised by the Home Office as a non-police law enforcement body. They have no special powers to enter or search premises. Royal Mail investigators will only enter and search with the consent of the appropriate parties. Royal Mail investigators have the powers of arrest of a citizen as outlined in S24 of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984; they have no enhanced rights to effect an arrest.

Royal Mail Group plc has no plans to seek any changes to the existing powers that apply to its investigators.

Does this answer the above question?

Yes5 people think so

No2 people think not

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