19.2“Mutual assistance” refers to assistance provided by one state to another generally, and it can include assistance in criminal investigations and prosecutions. The focus of some of the inter-agency regimes is not on criminal investigation and prosecution, but rather it is to facilitate regulatory compliance and enforcement. Albeit, compliance and enforcement can lead to criminal investigations and prosecutions.
[i]t is becoming apparent that there is a growing need to establish an international network of law enforcement agencies specifically devoted to financial crime prevention and detection.
These inter-agency regimes can pose a challenge, because it is sometimes unclear at what point these regimes should give way to the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act 1992 (MACMA) and, particularly, to the protections in MACMA.
19.4In this chapter, we consider how to manage the overlap that exists between MACMA and inter-agency regimes. We start by looking at the nature of inter-agency regimes, including the types of assistance that can be provided and the safeguards included. We then look at where MACMA and these regimes may overlap and the problems this creates, before proposing options for reform.