News story

New agency will lead fight against serious organised crime

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The National Crime Agency will transform how the UK tackles serious organised crime and keeps communities safe.

The Crime and Courts Bill published today will establish the National Crime Agency as a powerful body of operational crime fighters who will make sure serious criminals and organised gangs are tracked down and brought to justice.

Home Secretary Theresa May said: ‘Serious and organised crime affects people across the UK every day, and for too long we have lacked a strong, co-ordinated response.

‘The National Crime Agency will ensure those who commit serious and organised crime are brought to justice and their criminal assets are stripped away.’

National Crime Agency

Organised crime costs the public between £20 billion and £40 billion each year.

The National Crime Agency will be responsible for tackling these crimes, which include child abuse, drug and people smuggling, illegal immigration, fraud and cyber crime.

This means that, for the first time, a single national agency will be capable of pulling together different types of information on crime and will have the authority to co-ordinate and task a national response.

Director General of the National Crime Agency Keith Bristow said: ‘The National Crime Agency is a hugely ambitious change to UK law enforcement.

‘It will build on the good work of existing agencies to deliver a powerful, joined-up response to serious, complex and organised crime and across a wider remit which includes strengthening our borders, fighting fraud and cyber crime, and protecting children.’

Crime and Courts Bill

Other provisions in the Crime and Courts Bill include:

  • the introduction of a new drug driving offence
  • enabling the broadcasting of court proceedings in certain prescribed circumstances
  • abolish the full right of appeal for refusal of a family visit visa and in-country rights of appeal in exclusion cases
  • reforming statutory arrangements for judicial appointments to promote diversity and introduce greater transparency
  • creating a single county court and a single family court exercising a national jurisdiction over the whole of England and Wales
  • allowing more flexible deployment of court and tribunal judges between different jurisdictions 

Subject to parliamentary approval, the Crime and Courts Bill is expected to be granted Royal Assent by Spring 2013. The National Crime Agency will be fully operational by December 2013.