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SOCA Bill gets Royal Assent

29 April 2005

The Serious Organised Crime Bill received Royal Assent this week, becoming the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005.
The Act introduces a number of controversial measures including the establishment of the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) and abolition of the National Criminal Intelligence Service and National Crime Squad. The Act puts Queen’s Evidence on a statutory footing, gives police new powers including that of arrest for all offences.
It also gives community support officers additional powers, provides for the introduction of civilian custody officers to work alongside police in custody suites, extends harassment laws, and introduces new offences of interference with business contracts so as to damage an animal research organisation.

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