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Immigration Act 2014

Section 64: Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland

382.PONI was established under Part VII of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 1998. This section inserts new sections 60ZB and 60ZC into that Act enabling the remit of PONI to be expanded to provide for the oversight of certain persons exercising specified enforcement functions in relation to immigration, asylum and customs matters in the Home Office.

383.New section 60ZB(1) provides that the Secretary of State and PONI may enter into an agreement for the establishment of oversight and complaints procedures similar to those that apply in respect of the Police Service of Northern Ireland.

384.Subsection (2) provides a reserve power for the Secretary of State to establish oversight and complaints procedures by statutory instrument in the event that the Secretary of State and PONI are unable to reach an agreement.

385.Subsection (3) lists the persons who could be subject to PONI’s oversight.

386.Subsection (4) provides a non-exhaustive list of the functions, which might be specified as “enforcement functions” in an agreement or order under subsection (1) and (2) of section 60ZB, including powers of entry, powers to search persons or property, powers to seize or detain property, powers of arrest and detention and powers of examination.

387.Subsection (5) defines the meaning of “specified” and subsection (6) defines “immigration officer.”

388.New section 60ZC(1) provides that the Secretary of State must approve any variation or termination to the agreement.

389.Subsection (2) provides that the Secretary of State must consult with PONI and must consult with such other persons as she thinks appropriate before making any order under subsection (2) of section 60ZB.

390.Subsection (3) provides that an agreement or order under section 60ZB(1) or (2) may include provision for the Secretary of State to make payments to or in respect of the Ombudsman.

391.Subsection (4) provides that any agreement or order under section 60ZB(1) or (2) relates only to the exercise of enforcement functions wholly or partly in Northern Ireland.

392.Subsection (5) provides that any agreement or order under section 60ZB(1) or (2) only relates to matters arising on or after the day on which the agreement or order is made.

393.Subsection (6) provides that the agreement or order made under section 60ZB(1) or (2) may not confer functions on PONI in relation to the exercise by any person of a function conferred on him by or under Part 8 of the 1999 Act, which relates to arrangements made in relation to detainee custody officers responsible for the exercise of escort and custodial functions over persons detained under paragraph 16 of Schedule 2 to the 1971 Act.

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