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Legislative Measures

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 17 May 2016

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Questions (53)

Jim O'Callaghan

Question:

53. Deputy Jim O'Callaghan asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality her plans to introduce new legislative measures to target gangland crime; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [9970/16]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

I can assure the Deputy that addressing gangland crime remains a key ongoing priority for both the Government and for An Garda Síochána. As the Deputy is aware, the Taoiseach and I recently met with senior Garda management and were briefed on the significant progress being made in investigations into recent gang-related murders in the Dublin region. I can assure the Deputy that I, and the Government, remain committed to ensuring that An Garda Síochána have the necessary resources, both legislative and financial, to confront and oppose violent criminal gangs.

We already have in place a wide range of strong legislation to deal with gangland activities, including the Criminal Justice (Amendment) Act 2009. In addition we have seen the introduction of landmark legislation in recent years in the field of forensic investigation. The Criminal Justice (Forensic Evidence and DNA Database System) Act 2014 facilitated the establishment of a new DNA database which has the capacity to link suspects to unsolved crimes and will greatly assist the Gardaí in the investigation of a range of serious offences. The Deputy may also be aware that a new Bail Bill is being drafted at present on a priority basis, with a view to strengthening the operation of the bail system so as to make the law as effective as possible in protecting the public against crimes committed by persons on bail.

In addition, the new Programme for Government includes a commitment to review the existing Proceeds of Crime legislation and to continue to support the work of the Criminal Assets Bureau in tackling money laundering and to target the proceeds of crime.

I can assure the Deputy that all legislation in this area is kept under review and I am in ongoing contact with the Garda Commissioner to ensure that our laws and policing strategies respond as effectively as we can to evolving crime trends.

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