Further amendments to UK sanctions Bill at Lords Committee stage

Parliament5.jpgYesterday, the UK Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Bill had its third sitting in the Committee stage of the House of Lords. List of amendments considered by the Committee here, and transcripts of the session here and here. The next sitting will be on 12 December 2017.

The second sitting took place on 29 November 2017 (transcript of session here). For information on the first sitting (21 November), see previous blog here.

UK Venezuela regulations in force

Parliament1.jpgThe UK’s Venezuela (European Union Financial Sanctions) Regulations 2017, SI 2017/1094, came into force yesterday (6 December 2017). We previously reported that the Regulations make provision for UK enforcement, licensing, penalties etc in respect of Council Regulation (EU) 2017/2063, the EU’s sanctions on Venezuela.

OFSI renews 2 TAFA designations

OFSI1The UK Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI) has renewed the designations of ‘Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – General Command’ and ‘Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP)’ under the Terrorist Asset-Freezing etc. Act 2010 (TAFA).

OFSI Notice here. Proscribed organisations may appeal to the High Court (or, in Scotland, to the Court of Session) against the OFSI decisions renewing their final designations under s.26 TAFA – see previous blogs in relation to the ISYF’s appeals.

UK visa ban Bill for gross human rights violations

Parliament3On 28 June 2017, the Immigration Control (Gross Human Rights Abuses) Bill was introduced to the House of Lords by Baroness Kennedy of the Shaws. It is a Private Member’s Bill designed to permit the Government to refuse entry to the UK to third country nationals involved in gross human rights abuses (if the 3 conditions referred to in s.241A of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 are met). The second reading of the Bill will be on 15 December 2017.


UK updates nine open general export licences in line with EU measures

ECOThe UK Export Control Organisation (ECO) has updated and amended nine open general export licences (OGELs) to reflect recent amendments to the EU dual-use control list in Annex I to Council Regulation (EC) 428/2009.

The changes to the OGELs were due to come into force today, but have been delayed as the EU amendments have yet to come into force. The ECO anticipates that the EU changes will happen in the next few days and when they do, the changes in the OGELs will come into force (further notice will be issued to exporters).

Click here for the ECO Notice, and here for a summary of the proposed changes to the EU control list of dual-use items.

UK Sanctions Bill raises constitutional concerns


The House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution has published its Report on the UK Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Bill, in which it (inter alia):

  1. Considers it “constitutionally inappropriate” for Ministers to have such broad delegated powers, in particular to create new forms of sanctions, and says there must be sufficient safeguards and adequate parliamentary scrutiny to make those powers “constitutionally acceptable”.
  2. Recommends that the requirement for designation decisions to be limited by the concept of “proportionality” should appear on the face of the Bill, that EU law remedies for those subject to UN sanctions should be retained, that reviews of designations should take place more frequently than every 3 years, and that those designated are given rights of defence.
  3. Invites the House of Lords to consider whether the power to designate by description as opposed to name, and by connection with certain countries, are appropriate, too broad and whether they comply with legal certainty.
  4. Expresses “deep concern” that the Bill permits criminal offences to be created by regulation.
  5. Asks whether the consent of the devolved legislatures should be required when regulations are made amending or repealing legislation that they enacted.

The Explanatory Notes to the Bill have also been published – link here.

Amendments to UK Sanctions Bill at Committee stage

Parliament1On Tuesday (21 November 2017) the UK Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Bill went to Committee stage in the House of Lords, which involves line by line scrutiny of the Bill. Click here for the list of amendments considered by the Committee, and here for the transcript of the first sitting.

Administrative Court re-determines disclosure issues in Bank Mellat damages action

RCJ.jpgAs previously reported, the Court of Appeal held in October 2015 that the principles relating to the disclosure of closed material in the context of control orders, as set out in the House of Lords judgment in AF (No. 3), also applied to disclosure in the context of applications to set aside a financial restrictions decision, see: Bank Mellat v HM Treasury (No 4) [2015] EWCA Civ 1052, and remitted the case to the Administrative Court to consider whether there had been sufficient disclosure by HM Treasury in Bank Mellat’s action to set aside financial restrictions affecting it.

The Administrative Court has just decided, in a closed judgment, that some material may be withheld and other disclosed. The open judgment (Bank Mellat v HM Treasury [2017] EWHC 2931 (Admin)) sets out the relevant principles applied in the closed judgment.