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Proceeds of Crime Act 2002

Section 1: The Agency and its Director

11.This section establishes the Assets Recovery Agency (ARA) to be headed by a new office-holder, the Director, who will be appointed by the Secretary of State. In practice, functions of the Secretary of State relating to the Agency will be carried out by the Home Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and the Scottish Ministers (for the Director’s revenue functions in Scotland) as necessary. The section enables the Director to employ staff to assist him in carrying out his functions, and to enter into contractual arrangements for this purpose. It also enables the Director to delegate the exercise of his functions to his staff and to others working on a contractual basis for him. The effect of providing that the Director is a corporation sole (subsection (3)) is that the office of the Director has legal personality and the Director (in his capacity as office-holder) can hold property, bring legal proceedings and employ staff. The Agency will be a Non-Ministerial Department (NMD); it is normal for the Minister for the Civil Service to have a formal role in determining the number of staff employed by such bodies, and this is provided for at subsection (5).

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