Friday, January 12, 2007

Caught by the fuzz

The RTE news report noting that --

Northern Ireland's Assets Recovery Agency, which was modelled on the Criminal Assets Bureau, is no longer to exist as a separate entity. The agency will merge with the Serious Organised Crime Agency in London

doesn't really capture the full extent to which the instrument of seizing assets of organised crime is being abandoned, since the merger with London is not with the UK Assets Recovery Agency, but with a division of the police. The Assets Recovery Agency is being abolished. A true cynic might interpret the move as a nod to recalcitrant nationalist or loyalist gunmen that a move into normal gangsterism might be a tad more lucrative than before, but we're not that cynical.

UPDATE 18 JANUARY: The Agency does find time for one more Irish-related asset freeze before being subsumed.