The Crime and Courts Act 2013 (National Crime Agency and Proceeds of Crime) (Northern Ireland) Order 2015, was laid before Parliament on 29 January 2015. The Order extends relevant ‘NCA provisions’, ‘relevant civil recovery provisions’ and ‘relevant investigation provisions’ to enable the National Crime Agency to operate in Northern Ireland with full operational powers, including the ability to recover criminal assets, including the ability to request the recovery of assets overseas. The Order reflects a package of proposals that will create clear, transparent and significant local accountability that the Northern Ireland political parties have sought. They are the result of extensive work between the Home Office, the Department of Justice for Northern Ireland, the Northern Ireland Office, the National Crime Agency and the Police Service of Northern Ireland. Following negotiations, led by the Northern Ireland Justice Minister, I am extremely pleased to inform the House that on 3 February 2015, the Northern Ireland Assembly gave its consent to the making of that Order.
The Order reflects a package of measures to ensure police primacy, accountability and additional oversight of the NCA’s use of covert techniques in Northern Ireland. The consent given by the Assembly reflects its support for the Government’s aim that the people of Northern Ireland should benefit from a fully operational National Crime Agency, supporting the efforts of PSNI. I would like to put on record my thanks to Assembly members for their support.