Crime: Finance

Home Office written question – answered on 19th October 2017.

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Photo of Andrew Mitchell Andrew Mitchell Conservative, Sutton Coldfield

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how much funding has been made available to implement section 13 of the Criminal Finances Act 2017.

Photo of Andrew Mitchell Andrew Mitchell Conservative, Sutton Coldfield

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans she has to communicate guidance to the National Crime Agency to recommend freezing the assets of people implicated in the Magnitsky case.

Photo of Andrew Mitchell Andrew Mitchell Conservative, Sutton Coldfield

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether a taskforce has been set up to implement Section 13 of the Criminal Finances Act 2017.

Photo of Andrew Mitchell Andrew Mitchell Conservative, Sutton Coldfield

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she has communicated guidance to the Director General of the National Crime Agency on the implementation of section 13 of the Criminal Finances Act 2017.

Photo of Andrew Mitchell Andrew Mitchell Conservative, Sutton Coldfield

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many National Crime Agency personnel have been assigned to investigate people whose conduct constitutes, or is connected with, the commission of a gross human rights abuse or violation and to enforce the asset-freezing provisions in Part 5 of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

Photo of Ben Wallace Ben Wallace Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)

Section 13 of the Criminal Finances Act allows for civil recovery to be undertaken in cases in relation to property connected with gross human rights abuse or violations. It expands the definition of 'unlawful conduct' within Part 5 of POCA to include conduct by a public official that constitutes gross human rights abuse or violations (defined as torture or inhuman, cruel or degrading treatment) of a person on the grounds that they have been obtaining, exercising, defending or promoting human rights, or have sought to expose gross human rights abuse conducted by a public official.

This new power also covers conduct occurring anywhere in the world, provided that it would constitute a sufficiently serious offence if it had occurred in the UK (i.e. that it would have been triable by indictment).

There are a number of dependencies which must be implemented before the Act, including section 13, can be commenced. Work is underway to ensure the necessary court rules, secondary legislation, training, guidance and human resources are in place for commencement of the Act by Summer 2018.

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