How the Government plans to clamp down with new legislation
Justice Minister Alan Shatter has published details of new laws designed to strengthen investigations into white collar crime.
The new laws, if passed, are designed to tackle reluctant witnesses and delays by:
•Breaking up detention periods to allow white collar suspects to be interviewed at intervals over a four-month period. This will allow gardai to make further inquiries after initial questioning.
•Giving new powers to gardai to apply to court for an order to require any person with relevant information to produce documents, answer questions and provide information. Failure to comply with such an order will be an offence.
•The creation of a new offence, similar to the former misprision of felony offence, which relates to the failure to report information to the Gardai. Failure to report information about a financial crime to gardai will itself be a criminal offence.
•It will be a crime to falsify, conceal or construct documents relevant to a garda investigation in to a broad range of white collar offences.
•New procedures allowing judges to decide of documents over which parties claim legal privilege (confidentiality) can be admitted.