Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Twenty-Fourth Report



APPENDIX IV

First Memorandum by the Home Office

NATIONAL CRIME SQUAD (COMPLAINTS) (AMENDMENT) REGULATIONS 1999 (S.I. 1999/1266)

NCIS (COMPLAINTS) (AMENDMENT) REGULATIONS 1999 (S.I. 1999/1273)

  1. The Committee has requested a memorandum in respect of the above instruments on the following points:

      (1)  As regards the regulation 28 which is contained in the new Part III of the National Crime Squad (Complaints) Regulations 1998 inserted by regulation 5, explain—

        (a)  whether it is intended that, in the event of regulations being made under section 81 of the Police Act 1996 as to the procedure to be followed in dealing with complaints against the police under Part IV of that Act, those regulations which will take the place of this new Part III, with the modification specified in regulation 28, but with textual amendments and substitution in the new Part III to make it match the section 81 regulations; and

        (b)  if that is the intention, why (in that event) the provisions of the new Part III will not be textually amended and substituted to match the section 81 regulations.

      (2)  Corresponding questions as regards the regulation 28 which is contained in the new Part III of the NCIS (Complaints) Regulations 1998 inserted by regulation 5.

  2. So far as the first point is concerned, it is not intended that regulations made under section 81 of the Police Act 1996 ("the 1996 Act") as to the procedure to be followed in dealing with complaints against the police under Part IV of that Act will take the place of Part III of the National Crime Squad (Complaints) Regulations 1998 ("the 1998 Regulations") as inserted by regulation 5. Section 81 enables regulations to be made as to the procedure to be followed under Chapter I of Part IV of the 1996 Act. Chapter I relates to complaints made about the conduct of a member of a police force (see the definition of "complaint") in section 65 of the 1996 Act). A seconded police member of the National Crime Squad within the meaning of the 1998 Regulations (as amended by regulation 3(e)) is engaged on a period of temporary service to which section 97 of the 1996 Act applies and therefore, by virtue of subsection (3) of section 97, is to be treated as if he were not a member of a police force during that service. Neither Chapter I of Part IV of the 1996 Act nor regulations made under section 81 of that Act therefore apply to a seconded police member of the National Crime Squad.

  3. Section 83 of the Police Act 1997 ("the 1997 Act"), under which these Regulations are made, enables the Secretary of State, by regulations, to make provision for handling complaints against members of the National Crime Squad; the procedures established thereby are, so far as desirable, to correspond to those established by or by virtue of Chapter I of Part IV of the 1996 Act. The procedures established by regulations 18 to 27 of the 1998 Regulations as amended by regulation 5 correspond to the procedures established by section 67, 69 to 73, 75, 76, 79 and 80 of the 1996 Act. The procedures established by regulation 28 of those Regulations correspond to the procedures established by virtue of section 81 of the 1996 Act; the means by which this is effected is to provide that where regulations are made under Part III of the 1998 Regulations, as amended, are those which are established by the regulations made under section 81 with the modifications set out in sub-paragraphs (i) to (iv) of regulation 28.

  4. To date, no regulations have been made under section 81 of the 1996 Act but, by virtue of paragraph 1 of Schedule 8 to the 1996 Act, regulations made under section 99 of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (c.60) continue to have effect as if made under section 81 of the 19996 Act. The regulations in question are:

      (a)  the Police Complaints (General) Regulations 1985 (S.I. 1985/520, as amended by S.I. 1988/1762);

      (b)  the Police (Complaints) (Informal Resolution) Regulations 1985 (S.I. 1985/671); and

      (c)  the Police (Dispensation from Requirement to Investigate Complaints) Regulations 1985 (S.I. 1985/672, as amended by S.I. 1990/1301).

  By virtue of regulation 28 as construed in accordance with paragraph 1 of Schedule 8 to the 1996 Act, the procedures established by the regulations listed at paragraphs (a) to (c) above are, with the modifications set out in sub-paragraphs (i) to (iv), the procedures to be followed under Part III of the 1998 Regulations. They do not replace, but rather supplement, the procedures established by regulations 18 to 27. The same principle would apply to any regulations made in future under section 81 of the 1996 Act.

  This explanation of the point at (1)(a) above means that it is not necessary to answer the point at (1)(b).

  So far as the second point is concerned, the same explanation applies to the NCIS (Complaints) (Amendment) Regulations 1999. The corresponding references are:

      (a)  for the National Crime Squad (Complaints) Regulations 1998 read the NCIS (Complaints) Regulations 1998;

      (b)  for section 83 of the 1997 Act read section 39 of that Act.

8th June 1999


 
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