Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Act 2019 and Codes of Practice

13 August 2020

Further sections of the Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Act 2019 are in force from 13 August 2020. See our summary of the more notable changes for details.

Three new and revised codes of practice also come in force on 13 August 2020, regarding national security functions carried out at UK ports and the Northern Ireland border. They reflect changes made by the Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Act 2019. These codes are:

Examining Officers and Review Officers under Schedule 3 to the Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Act 2019

Schedule 3 to the Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Act 2019 contains powers for examining and review officers to stop, question, search and detain a person at UK ports and the Northern Ireland border area for the purpose of determining whether the person appears to be a person who is, or has been, engaged in hostile activity. This new Code of Practice, for examining and review officers under Schedule 3, relates to the training and conduct of officers who stop, question, search and detain persons, to determine whether they are or have been engaged in hostile activity. Officers must perform the functions conferred by virtue of Schedule 3 in accordance with the code of practice.

Examining Officers and Review Officers under Schedule 7 to the Terrorism Act 2000

The 2019 Act makes amendments to Schedule 7 to the Terrorism Act 2000, which contains powers for examining officers to stop, question, search and detain a person at UK ports and the Northern Ireland border area, for the purpose of determining whether the person appears to be a person who is, or has been, concerned in the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism. This revised Code of Practice, for examining officers under Schedule 7, reflects the amendments made by the 2019 Act to the 2000 Act. These amendments include the introduction of a statutory bar on the use in criminal proceedings of answers given in response to questions put under Schedule 7 and provisions for pausing the detention clock applicable to detainees under Schedule 7 whilst the person detained receives hospital treatment. Officers must perform the functions conferred by virtue of Schedule 7 to the 2000 Act in accordance with the revised code of practice.

Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 Guidance on the making or renewing of national security determinations allowing the retention of biometric data

This is a revised Code of Practice regarding the making or renewing of national security determinations. The 2019 Act amends a number of enactments which contain powers to retain biometric data where authorised under a 'national security determination', to increase the maximum duration of retention under such a determination from 2 to 5 years. Under section 22(2) of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, any person authorised to make or renew a national security determination under the provisions mentioned in section 20(2)(a) of the 2012 Act, must have regard to guidance issued under section 22 and revisions to it.

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