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Flanagan, Charles

Thursday, 10 May 2018

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.


Business of Dáil

I offer my apologies to you, a Leas-Cheann Comhairle, to the staff and to Deputies O'Callaghan, Quinlivan and Mattie McGrath. I mistook the time; I thought it was 2.15 p.m. I apologise and I appr...More Button

Thank you.More Button

Topical Issue Matters

Did the Leas-Cheann Comhairle say electronic tagging?More Button

Sorry.More Button

I thought it was for me and Deputy O'Callaghan.More Button

Maybe Deputy Mattie McGrath has an interest in this as well.More Button

Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) (Amendment) Bill 2018: Order for Second Stage

I move: "That Second Stage be taken now."More Button

Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) (Amendment) Bill 2018: Second Stage

I move: "That the Bill be now read a Second Time."More Button

The purpose of this important legislation is to transpose in large part the fourth EU money laundering directive. It will also bring Irish law into line with the recommendations of the Financial...More Button

We know that by targeting the proceeds of crime we can remove the incentive for the commission of acts of serious and organised crime, such as human trafficking, drug trafficking and fraud. That...More Button

Internationally it is recognised that preventive measures also play an important role. In the Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) Act 2010 and before that in the Criminal...More Button

Money laundering and terrorist financing are cross-border phenomena. We have a globalised, open economy and criminals will exploit this to move proceeds from one country to another. For this re...More Button

The EU legislation and the FATF recommendations are frequently updated to reflect new trends and ensure they are still relevant. It is the fourth directive, Directive 2015/849, that is being tra...More Button

The anti-money laundering steering committee brings together relevant Departments and agencies to co-ordinate the national response to risks relating to money laundering and terrorist financing. ...More Button

As well as ensuring that Ireland fulfils its EU and international obligations, the Government is committed to tackling white-collar crime in all its forms. The Bill forms part of the package of ...More Button

The Minister for Finance and his officials share responsibility for the transposition of this directive. As well as its role in preventing crime, anti-money laundering legislation is aimed at pr...More Button

Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) (Amendment) Bill 2018: Second Stage (Continued)

The Department of Finance has been working closely with my officials on this Bill and is drawing up its own legislation to transpose provisions of the directive on beneficial ownership of trusts an...More Button

Before turning to the individual provisions of the Bill, which is complex and multifaceted, I would like to give a general overview of its content. The main change brought about by the Bill is a...More Button

The proposed law also recognises the reality that many businesses today operate in group structures across borders and it makes a number of amendments in this regard. The Bill expands on require...More Button

The amendments made by the Bill also extend the scope of existing obligations in other ways. For example, some measures which previously only applied to banks will now apply to other financial i...More Button

Of great importance in the global fight against money laundering and terrorist financing is the role of the financial intelligence unit. The financial intelligence unit in Ireland is part of An ...More Button

Turning to the individual provisions, sections 1 and 2 contain the usual provisions setting out the Short Title and commencement provisions and the interpretation section. Sections 3 to 5, inclu...More Button

Sections 6 to 9, inclusive, amend the definition of "beneficial owner” to bring it in line with the new directive. When carrying out customer due diligence, a designated person must also check t...More Button

Sections 10 to 19, inclusive, are the core provisions of the Bill. Section 10 inserts two new sections in the 2010 Act concerning risk. In this regard, designated persons will now be explicitly...More Button

Sections 11 to 19, inclusive, concern customer due diligence. Section 33 of the 2010 Act contains the main obligations to identify and verify the identity of customers and beneficial owners. So...More Button

Simplified due diligence can be carried out where the customer is considered to be low risk. If simplified due diligence is applied, the designated person must keep a record of the reasons for a...More Button

On the other hand, where there are factors suggesting high risk, extra measures must be taken. Customers in what are deemed to be high-risk third countries are one such category and politically ...More Button

Section 20 makes some changes to the circumstances where a designated person can rely on a third party to carry out customer due diligence. Sections 21 to 23, inclusive, concern the functions of...More Button

Section 24 amends section 51 of the 2010 Act. This concerns the offence of “tipping off', in other words, telling someone that they are being investigated for money laundering. This alters one ...More Button

Section 26 relates to the policies and procedures that designated persons must put in place to prevent and detect money laundering and terrorist financing. The new section expands on the matters...More Button

Sections 27 and 28 concern the keeping of records. Section 27 allows An Garda Síochána to require that a designated person retains records relating to customer due diligence beyond the current f...More Button

Sections 29 and 30 require a group of companies to have common anti-money laundering policies. If an Irish company has a subsidiary in another country, it must ensure that it applies adequate an...More Button

Section 31 extends a prohibition on entering into a correspondent relationship with a shell bank so that it now applies to all financial institutions. Section 32 makes an amendment which will ma...More Button

Section 33 substitutes the section creating a defence of due diligence to the offences under this part of the Act. There is no longer provision for guidelines to be made to be taken into account...More Button

Section 34 inserts a section which requires certain designated persons to register with the Central Bank. This is for entities which the Central Bank supervises for money laundering purposes but...More Button

Section 35 amends the penalties that can be applied by the Central Bank under its administrative sanctions procedure to bring them in line with the directive. As well as its usual penalties, it ...More Button

Section 36 substitutes Schedule 2 to the 2010 Act which lists some of the financial services and activities subject to the Act.More Button

Sections 37 and 38 set out the factors that must be taken into account in determining whether there is a low or high risk. Section 39 repeals certain provisions of existing law and section 40 make...More Button

In conclusion, this Bill is of great importance. By enhancing Ireland's already extensive money laundering regime, it will act as a further tool to combat global organised crime, to protect our ...More Button

The Deputy will be covered by this Bill.More Button

I thank all the Deputies who contributed for their remarks and the support they have offered for the Bill. As stated earlier, this is important legislation that will enable Ireland to meet its int...More Button

Deputy O'Callaghan referred to the late transposition of the directive, which was also raised as an issue by Deputy Quinlivan. This is a somewhat complex Bill, the subject matter of which spans ...More Button

This means spending some time ensuring that the legislation being transposed is not only effective but also enforceable. We have been in touch with the European Commission and have advised it of t...More Button

I welcome, in particular, Deputy O'Callaghan's comments on sections 15 and 26. I am happy to give this matter further consideration and we can return to it on Committee Stage.More Button

A number of issues were raised by Deputy Quinlivan, who is no longer present. He mentioned media reports concerning the special purpose vehicle and shadow banking. We will have an opportunity t...More Button

Deputy Mattie McGrath spoke about priorities. He made a reasonable point about new technologies. I accept his comment that criminals will always try to exploit new technologies as they arise. ...More Button

This is a detailed and technical legislative measure. That reflects the complexity of the measures which we are recommended internationally to take in response to the ever more sophisticated nat...More Button

I appreciate the contributions from the Deputies and I look forward to continuing the debate on the Bill in the coming weeks.More Button

Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) (Amendment) Bill 2018: Referral to Select Committee

I move:More Button

  Sitting suspended at 3.25 p.m. and resumed at 3.35 p.m.More Button

Anti-Social Behaviour (Continued)

I thank Deputy Broughan for raising this important matter. I am pleased to be able to respond.More Button

I am aware of the serious incident that took place earlier this week concerning a number of youths who vandalised a DART train as it arrived into Clongriffin station. The youths in question then...More Button

In terms of tackling this particular type of crime, I am advised by An Garda Síochána that Garda management engages extensively with transport operators and a range of regional and local operation...More Button

I listened carefully to Deputy Broughan and take on board the points he raised. He will be aware that An Garda Síochána already employs a wide range of operational measures aimed at tackling pub...More Button

The type of behaviour we witnessed in Clongriffin this week has no place in civilised society. For its part, the Government remains committed to ensuring that An Garda Síochána has all the neces...More Button

The Government is committed to ensuring a strong and visible police presence throughout the country in order to maintain and strengthen community engagement, provide reassurance to citizens and to...More Button

I listened to Deputy Broughan's remarks on stakeholder engagement and stakeholders being brought together and I agree with the Deputy.More Button

It is clear that this is an issue of concern and something on which Deputy Broughan has strong views, as indeed do we all. It is important that we work together to eradicate this type of unaccepta...More Button

I am further advised that close contact is being maintained with local and senior management in Irish Rail and other transport providers, and An Garda Síochána has a good working relationship wit...More Button

Garda Strength

Was asked: the Garda numbers within the Donegal division; the increase in those numbers in each year since 2014; if further provision has been made for the remainder of 2018 for increasing Garda numbers parti...More Button

As the Deputy will appreciate, it is the Garda Commissioner who is responsible for the distribution of resources, including personnel, among the various Garda Divisions and I, as Minister, have no ...More Button

Was asked: the number of sergeants and inspectors in the Dublin north Garda division; the locations of the stations; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of resources, including personnel, among the various Garda Divisions and I, as Minister, have no direct rol...More Button

Garda Data

Was asked: the number of gardaí that undertook each category of Garda driving training course in each of the years 2016 to 2017 and to date in 2018; the frequency with which each category of driving test is h...More Button

As you will appreciate, it is the Garda Commissioner who is responsible for carrying on and managing and controlling generally the administration and business of An Garda Síochána including by arra...More Button

I have requested the specific information sought by the Deputy from the Commissioner and I will write to him directly on receipt of same.More Button

A deferred reply was forwarded to the Deputy under Standing Order 42AMore Button

Was asked: the number of vehicles in the Garda fleet; the number of vehicles brought into and taken out of service, respectively by vehicle type since 2011, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on...More Button

The Government's Capital Plan 2016 – 2021 provides €46 million for investment in the Garda fleet, to ensure that An Garda Síochána has a modern, effective and fit for purpose fleet and this is in a...More Button

Was asked: the number of Garda personnel; the stations to which new recruits have been posted since 2016, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of resources, including personnel, among the various Garda Divisions and I, as Minister, have no direct rol...More Button

Was asked: the personnel stationed in the Garda Training College in Templemore by rank, including those seconded to Templemore; the field in which each operates; the number of non-sworn personnel; the fields ...More Button

As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of resources, including personnel, among the various Garda Divisions and for carrying on and managing and c...More Button

The information sought by the Deputy is currently being collated and I will write to the Deputy when it is available in the format requested.More Button

Road Traffic Offences Data

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question Nos. 119 of 16 May 2017 and 505 of 16 January 2018, the number of persons arrested for drink driving by An Garda Síochána by age, gender, county and Garda district...More Button

I have requested a report from An Garda Síochána in relation to the statistics sought by the Deputy and I will be in contact with the Deputy directly on receipt of this report.More Button

The following deferred reply was received under Standing Order 42A

  I refer to Parliamentary Question 119 of 16 May 2017, in which you asked for the number of persons con...More Button

Prison Service

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 156 of 8 February 2018, the way in which the Circular OPS 12/2011, Consolidated Guidelines for Prisoners Released on Temporary Release, contains a reference to...More Button

I am advised by the Irish Prison Service that the Director General commissioned an external operational report into the circumstances surrounding the removal of a person from the Dochas Centre. A r...More Button

I am also advised by the Irish Prison Service that notwithstanding the legal and procedural flaws which were highlighted in the aforementioned draft operational report, some aspects were reviewed...More Button

Legal Services Regulation

Was asked: if he will clarify his reply to Parliamentary Question Nos. 509 and 573 of 16 January 2018 (details supplied), in view of press reports stating that the Legal Services Regulatory Authority has not ...More Button

The Legal Services Regulatory Authority has been established on a firm statutory basis under the Legal Services Regulation Act 2015 its establishment day for that purpose having been 1 October 2016...More Button

Departmental Staff Data

Was asked: the number of employees within his Department in receipt of a salary below the living wage of €11.70 per hour.More Button

I can inform the Deputy that based on current staffing figures, 185 staff in my Department are in receipt of a salary below €11.70 per hour. More Button

Departmental Agencies Staff Data

Was asked: the disaggregation of salary scales or levels among agency workers within or through his Department.More Button

Was asked: the number of workers employed through his Department under the status of agency worker.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 129 and 130 together.

  I wish to advise the Deputy that my Department uses the services of the State's independent recruitment office, the Publi...More Button

Court Accommodation Refurbishment

Was asked: his plans for the future of Swords courthouse; the projected timeline for planned developments within the building; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, under the provisions of the Courts Service Act 1998, management of the courts, including the provision of accommodation for court sittings, is the responsibility of the...More Button

In order to be of assistance to the Deputy, I have had enquiries made and the Courts Service has informed me that there are no plans to carry out works to Swords Courthouse at this time. More Button

However, a number of developments in relation to Courts Service accommodation requirements are outlined in the Government's recent National Development Plan 2018 -2027. They include:More Button

- Further new or refurbished courthouses in regional cities and county towns where facilities remain substandard (including Galway City, Wicklow Town, Portlaoise, Tralee and Roscommon) and furthe...More Button

- Regional Family Law Centres;More Button

- A nationwide condition survey of all court buildings in the estate will be undertaken to determine their condition and identify works required in relation to any issues identified and meet ongo...More Button

The precise allocation and timing of additional funding over the entire ten year period remains to be fully determined. It will be dependent on the outcome of further detailed planning and analys...More Button

Court Accommodation Provision

Was asked: his plans for the future of Balbriggan courthouse; the projected timeline for planned developments within the building; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, under the provisions of the Courts Service Act 1998, management of the courts, including the provision of accommodation for court sittings, is the responsibility of the...More Button

In order to be of assistance to the Deputy, I have had enquiries made and the Courts Service has informed me that there are no plans to carry out any works to Balbriggan Courthouse at this time.More Button

However, a number of developments in relation to Courts Service accommodation requirements are outlined in the Government's recent National Development Plan 2018 -2027. They include:More Button

- Further new or refurbished courthouses in regional cities and county towns where facilities remain substandard (including Galway City, Wicklow Town, Portlaoise, Tralee and Roscommon) and furthe...More Button

- Regional Family Law Centres;More Button

- A nationwide condition survey of all court buildings in the estate will be undertaken to determine their condition and identify works required in relation to any issues identified and meet ongo...More Button

The precise allocation and timing of additional funding over the entire ten year period remains to be fully determined. It will be dependent on the outcome of further detailed planning and analys...More Button

Garda Stations

Was asked: his plans for a new Garda station in Tallaght; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that there is overcrowding in the station; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Deputy will appreciate that the Garda Commissioner is primarily responsible for the effective and efficient use of the resources available to An Garda Síochána, including responsibility for the...More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, the Garda Síochána Building and Refurbishment Programme 2016 – 2021, which is an ambitious 5 year building Programme reflecting the priorities of An Garda Síochána, w...More Button

However, I am informed by Garda authorities that the Programme does include the provision of a Property and Exhibit Store (PEMS) at Tallaght Garda Station and that the development of this propert...More Button

Finally, I am informed by the Garda authorities that to assist with accommodation in the existing Garda station in Tallaght, the OPW has provided additional accommodation for An Garda Síochána in...More Button

Property Services Regulatory Authority Remit

Was asked: if he has reviewed the role of the Property Services Regulatory Authority to encompass a supervisory role for management owner companies; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Property Services Regulatory Authority (PSRA) was established on 3 April 2012 under the Property Services (Regulation) Act 2011 to regulate, control and supervise property service providers (i....More Button

The statutory basis for property management companies in multi-unit developments (generally known as owners' management companies and which comprise the owners of units in the development) is pro...More Button

The PSRA has no statutory function under the Multi-Unit Development Act 2011. This is appropriate since owners' management companies do not provide property services. More Button

Nevertheless, complaints concerning the provision of services to owners' management companies by licensed property management agents may be referred to the PSRA. The statutory functions of the Au...More Button

As outlined above, owners' management companies are not property service providers as defined in the Property Services (Regulation) Act 2011 and I have no plans to review the Act in this regard.More Button

Departmental Strategies

Was asked: the projected increase or demand for workers and employees due to demographic changes for the years 2018 to 2028.More Button

Was asked: the budgetary projection within his Department due to demographic change for the years 2018 to 2028.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 138 and 139 together.More Button

While the focus on the annual estimates process tends to be on the upcoming financial year, the Department is increasingly focusing on the requirements for future years and where possible this wi...More Button

The recently published National Development Plan provides for capital allocations for the Justice sector from 2018 to 2022 and the main areas of capital investment for the sector in the period to...More Button

My Department is also developing its analytical capability to be better placed to predict future trends including demographic changes and thus better inform both policy developments and budgetary...More Button

Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission

Was asked: if a report was prepared for the GSOC directorate regarding work practices and case management in the Longford office of GSOC following concerns expressed in 2016 regarding work practices.More Button

Was asked: the number of cases discontinued in the past year under section 93 of the Garda Síochána Act 2005.More Button

Was asked: the number of cases advanced under section 101 of the Garda Síochána Act 2005 in the past year.More Button

Was asked: if he is satisfied that the GSOC office for its south team is adequately secure physically, technically and electronically for staff, exhibits, records and other materials.More Button

Was asked: if it is permitted for GSOC staff to use GSOC vehicles and to claim expenses for personal use or for use outside of GSOC business.More Button

Was asked: the number of members of An Garda Síochána that have been seconded from An Garda Síochána to GSOC; the responsibilities of each within GSOC; and the responsibilities they have for the investigation...More Button

Was asked: if allegations have been made since 2014 of serious misconduct against staff based in or undertaking duties in the southern region of GSOC; if so, if those allegations have been investigated; the p...More Button

Was asked: if there was a public interest investigation under section 103(4) of the Garda Síochána Act 2005 into the discharge of a weapon at Cabra, Dublin 7 in November 2017; and if not, the reason therefor.More Button

Was asked: if it is generally the policy that GSOC would investigate the discharge of a weapon by a member of An Garda Síochána under section 103(4) of the Garda Síochána Act 2005.More Button

Was asked: the number of investigations under section 103(4) of the Garda Síochána Act 2005 into discharges of weapons by members of An Garda Síochána that have been undertaken by GSOC in the past three years.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 140 to 149, inclusive, together.

  The information the Deputy has sought is not immediately to hand. I have requested the information and I will ...More Button

A deferred reply was forwarded to the Deputy under Standing Order 42A.More Button

Departmental Data

Was asked: the number of persons who have been found not guilty of an offence by reason of insanity and have been discharged from the Central Mental Hospital in each of the past 12 months; and the offence or ...More Button

I can advise the Deputy that during the last 12 months up to the end of April, three patients were conditionally discharged from the Central Mental Hospital and two patients were unconditionally di...More Button

Some of the patients were charged with more than one offence and to preserve the confidentiality of patients, the offences have been listed together.  The offences included two homicides, possess...More Button

All of the patients were found “not guilty by reason of insanity” in line with Section 5 of the Criminal Law (Insanity) Act  2006, as amended.More Button

Visa Applications

Was asked: his views on whether it is now time to examine the possibility of requiring Israeli citizens who reside in illegal settlements to undergo the same visa application process as that which Palestinian...More Button

The requirements for which countries are visa-required to come to Ireland are kept under regular review in consultation with my colleague, the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade.  More Button

A wide range of factors are considered in determining which countries are visa required. In particular, the Government is pursuing a strategy of greater co-ordination and co-operation on visa mat...More Button

As part of this greater co-operation, the matter of alignment of those States whose citizens are visa-required is also being kept under review.  The greater the extent of alignment between the tw...More Button