Do we need a British FBI?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by countdokku, Feb 3, 2006.

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  1. Yes, as long as the guy in charge of ours does'nt wear a dress.

  2. No, just invest in the police forces we already have.

  1. A question for ex or serving police on Arrse; do you think SOCA is a good idea or is it unnecessary.
    The Scottish version of SOCA, the Oraganised Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency, seems to have been less than enthusiastically recieved by the senior ranks of Scottish police forces.
    Of course, this may just be because Chief Constables see any new Law Enforcement agency as a threat to their power.
  2. isn't SOCA part of MI5? it's listed on their website.....
  3. Maybe I've got the name wrong. If so, my bad. I was refering to the new serious/organised crime agency that is supposed to go live this year. There are, in fact two agencies; one will operate in England and Wales while the second will operate in Scotland. Both agencies will also carry out operations abroad, i.e Europe.
    The Scottish agency was created by expanding the Scottish DEA to carry out investigations into other types of serious crime, give it it's own udget and allow it to recruit directly rather than rely on police officers seconded from other forces.
  4. I have a friend who is a detective with the National Crime Squad who got his contract to transfer to SOCA quite recently. As far as I can tell, from what he has told me, SOCA is the NCS joined up with the Immigration Service, bits of Customs and Excise and I don't know if there's anyone else in there. They will work alongside MI5 on cases.
  5. Yeah, that sounds about right.

    Anyway, I always thought the Security Serivce (a.k.a. MI5) was this country's equivelent of the FBI?
  6. The FBI arrests people, while I believe MI5 doesn't. Also, the FBI does criminal investigations as well as counterintelligence/counterterrorism. Being that FBI is a law enforcement agency, they may have to operate under more legal restrictions than MI5.
  7. Is that not the NCIS for us?
  8. My friend thinks SOCA will be pretty equivalent to the FBI - but I know nothing about the FBI so I couldn't say!
  9. I could bore you with the level 1, 2 & 3 criminality model, the need for strategic police forces to deliver fit-for-purpose operational capability against organised crime and terrorism and the need for a coherent national agency to take the pressure off of local police forces. And the need for a brigaded NCS/ NCIS.

    But I won't.

    Like everything, the devil is in the detail. If they rock up like the Federales at local police forces, give it the big one but don't actually put the door in themselves then they won't be very popular. And the project will hinge on their relationship with police forces. Similarly, seeing as they won't be cops but will have powers of arrest, there are accountability issues. Their "police authority" is, er, the Home Secretary.

    It looks like it will be a very political law enforcement agency, I hope the bosses there are on top of that. There are some quality people over there, though, I for one am a very interested observer. Actually, I hope it works. The problems are too big for 43 (soon to be 12) Chief Constables to sort out between themselves and their little empires.
  10. Surely if we gave Mi5 powers on the arrest it would be one step towards a state security agency?
  11. ^ Maybe five or ten years from now some wag will moot merging of the Security Service and the SOCA. It would save gazillions, it makes sense and the only thing stopping it would be politiking.
  12. Recruitment might be an issue; if you recruit from serving police officers, their forces will accuse the new agencies of cherry-picking their best men. And the regular police are over-stretched anyway. If you recruit and train civilians, it's going to take a lot longer.
    Last year, the head of the SDEA said he needed his officers to be armed. He claimed that informing other police forces so he could have their armed officers back up SDEA personnel breached OpSec. and could give criminals a chance to escape, remove evidence etc.
    According to the media, the SDEA was effectively saying to "normal" police officers: we don't trust you. We need our own armed officers because we can't trust you're guys not to inform the drug-barons if we give you operational details.
    Since then the relationship between SDEA and other Scottish police forces has been frosty, at least in public.
  13. I have some dealings with the police through my business and it does kinda amuse me to observe the politics between forces, between departments within the police and the antipathy between uniformed and non-uniformed! Makes military politicking seem positively benign by comparison!

    My understanding from my friend was that briging police types into operations with Immigration and Customs and excise etc would produce more rigorous investigations, better quality evidence more competently presented and so on. However, what it evolves into in years to come could be an interesting debate!
  15. there needs to be some form of Central Control and operations. The crooks can move around the country as they like but the police forces are restricted to boundaries, local and County. We should have a units that can go any where under take any task in major crimes.