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AD HOC COMMITTEE - FINANCIAL INVESTIGATIONS (NI) ORDER 2001
MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS: TUESDAY, 16 JANUARY 2001
ROOM 152, PARLIAMENT BUILDINGS
Present:Mr Alban Maginness MLA (Chairperson)
In Attendance:Dr Andrew C Peoples (Committee Clerk)
Meeting opened at 10.37am in public session.
2. Approval of draft minutes of previous proceedings
The minutes were agreed and signed by the Chairperson.
3. Matters arising from meeting of 8 January 2001
No further information was received from the Criminal Assets Bureau, Dublin.
4. Update of Written Submissions
Members were given an update on written submissions received; 10 organisations provided written submissions.
5. Minutes of Evidence
All members were reminded to return amendments to the Minutes of Evidence by Tuesday, 16 February 2001.
6. Consideration of the Draft Report
The Committee examined the draft Report and it was agreed to carry out an Article by Article consideration of the draft Order.
Article 1 - The Committee had no comments on this Article.
Article 2 - The Committee had no comments on this Article.
Article 3 - The Committee was content with this Article but recommended there be some mechanism whereby the Code of Practice for financial investigators could be amended to include an application for an extension of the time period for compliance with general bank and solicitor circulars.
11.05am Mr Bell joined the meeting.
Article 4 - The Committee had no objections to this Article.
11.12am Mr Robinson joined the meeting.
Article 5 - The Committee had no objections to this Article.
11.17am Mr Agnew joined the meeting.
Article 6 - The Committee engaged in considerable debate about supporting and opposing arguments for Article 6. It recommended that non-contentious business should be clearly defined.
11.55am Ms Lewsley left the meeting.
12.12pm Mr McClarty and Mr Wilson left the meeting.
As regards the substance of Article 6 the Committee's majority view was to accept the amendments in the draft Order. To some extent the Committee shared the concerns of Liberty, the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission and The Law Society of Northern Ireland. It was also cognizant of those concerns and recommended that the Secretary of State enter into full and meaningful consultations before implementation.
Article 7 - The Committee had no objections to this Article.
Article 8 - The Committee had no comments on this Article.
The Committee agreed the format of the draft Report and that it should be amended to take account of today's debate.
7. Agree Motion
The Committee agreed the following motion:
"That the Report of the Ad Hoc Committee set up to consider the draft Financial Investigations (Northern Ireland) Order 2001 referred by the Secretary of State should be submitted to the Secretary of State as a Report of the Northern Ireland Assembly."
8. Any other business
9. Date and time of next meeting
The next meeting of the Committee is to be held on Monday, 22 January 2001 at 11.00am in Room 152 in Parliament Buildings.
The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 12.20pm.
Alban Maginness MLA
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