Former justice minister calls for new north-south policing body

Former justice minister Dermot Ahern has called for the consideration of a new north-south body focused on policing in order to crack down on cross-border crime.

Mr Ahern, who held the justice brief in the Fianna Fáil-led government from 2008 to 2011, said a new institution could complement the six existing north-south bodies established under the Good Friday Agreement, The Irish Times reports.

He said it was “not seen as much of a necessity” at the time the 1998 peace deal was agreed, but the 2006 St Andrews Agreement had opened new possibilities around the previously “thorny issue”.

However, Mr Ahern admitted: “It might have legal and constitutional implications that would have to be looked at very carefully. It would be very complex because of all the jurisdictional issues about who prosecutes who and extradition.”

Fianna Fáil leader Michéal Martin has suggested the establishment of a cross-border counterpart to the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB).

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has asked the Garda Commissioner to examine the issues.

Tags: Policing

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