NEW LEGISLATION TO FACILITATE INVESTIGATIONS INTO WHITE COLLAR CRIME
The Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence, Mr. Alan Shatter has announced that the provisions of the Criminal Justice Act 2011 relating to the investigation of white collar crime will come into effect tomorrow, Tuesday 9th August.
The primary purpose of the legislation is to facilitate the more effective investigation of white collar crime and to reduce associated delays.
The Act provides for new procedures to facilitate Garda access to essential information, documentation and electronically held information to assist in current and future investigations.
The Act also makes it a criminal offence to fail to furnish to Gardai information which could prevent the commission of white collar crime or assist in the investigation of white collar crime. Serious breaches will attract serious penalties which range from an unlimited fine to five years imprisonment, or both.
Critics of the Act argue that although it is reasonably clear as to what information must be reported, it is less clear when this information must be reported.
The Act also introduces important new measures to protect whistle blowers. However, the Act attempts to discourage spurious reporting by making it an offence to disclose information which the reporting individual knows to be false or is reckless as to whether it is false or not.