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Police: International Co-operation

Volume 479: debated on Monday 29 September 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 25 April 2008, Official Report, columns 119-21WS, on the Justice and Home Affairs Council, (1) how many times UK officers have been part of joint investigation teams performing operations in other member states in the last five years; (219490)

(2) how many times joint investigation teams have performed operations in the UK in the last five years;

(3) what powers European police officers acting as part of the joint investigation teams have on UK territory.

We are aware of just one joint investigation team operation having been established under the provisions of the Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters 2000 involving United Kingdom law enforcement. This was a joint United Kingdom and Netherlands drugs investigation which took place in 2005, to which there was a successful outcome.

All members of a joint investigation team would be subject to the laws of the country in which the team is operating. Law enforcement officials from another member state act in a support and advisory capacity and would not have police powers when the team is operating in the United Kingdom. Teams operating in the United Kingdom would be under the strict control of a United Kingdom team leader.