Page last updated at 11:16 GMT, Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Co-operation on criminal justice matters

The justice minister said that positive progress had been made under the intergovernmental agreement on co-operation on criminal justice matters, on 11 December 2012.

David Ford met with the Irish Minster for Justice, Alan Shatter TD, on 23 November.

After the meeting, representatives of probation services from Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland met to discuss public protection issues.

These included a co-ordinated strategic response to dealing with crime, communication and joint-working.

The minister said there were six project advisory groups working on public protection, registered offenders, youth justice, forensic science and support for victims of crime.

"Each of the project advisory groups continues to promote and support co-operation across the broad spectrum of criminal justice agencies on both sides of the border," he said.

"In the area of forensic science, the Irish Forensic Science Service are assisting the PSNI with drugs analysis in a number of cases, partly to test mechanisms for transfer of samples."

Mr Ford also said there was "excellent ongoing co-operation" between both police forces at an operational level in the management of sex offenders.

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