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50 2001

CRIMINAL JUSTICE (THEFT AND FRAUD OFFENCES) ACT, 2001

PART 5

Counterfeiting

Interpretation (Part 5).

32. —(1) In this Part—

“currency note” and “coin” mean, respectively, a currency note and coin lawfully issued or customarily used as money in the State or in any other state or a territorial unit within it and include a note denominated in euro and a coin denominated in euro or in cent and also any note or coin which has not been lawfully issued but which would, on being so issued, be a currency note or coin within the above meaning; and

“lawfully issued” means issued—

(a) by or under the authority of the European Central Bank,

(b) by the Central Bank of Ireland or the Minister for Finance, or

(c) by a body in a state (other than the State) or a territorial unit within it which is authorised under the law of that state or territorial unit to issue currency notes or coins.

(2) For the purposes of this Part, a thing is a counterfeit of a currency note or coin—

(a) if it is not a currency note or coin but resembles a currency note or coin (whether on one side only or on both) to such an extent that it is reasonably capable of passing for a currency note or coin of that description, or

(b) if it is a currency note or coin which has been so altered that it is reasonably capable of passing for a note or coin of some other description.

(3) For the purposes of this Part—

(a) a thing consisting of or containing a representation of one side only of a currency note, with or without the addition of other material, is capable of being a counterfeit of such a currency note, and

(b) a thing consisting—

(i) of parts of two or more currency notes, or

(ii) of parts of a currency note, or of parts of two or more currency notes, with the addition of other material,

is capable of being a counterfeit of a currency note.

Counterfeiting currency notes and coins.

33. —(1) A person who makes a counterfeit of a currency note or coin, with the intention that he or she or another shall pass or tender it as genuine, is guilty of an offence.

(2) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on conviction on indictment to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years or both.

Passing, etc. counterfeit currency notes or coins.

34. —(1) A person who—

(a) passes or tenders as genuine any thing which is, and which he or she knows or believes to be, a counterfeit of a currency note or coin, or

(b) delivers any such thing to another person with the intention that that person or any other person shall pass or tender it as genuine,

is guilty of an offence.

(2) A person who, without lawful authority or excuse, delivers to another person anything which is, and which he or she knows or believes to be, a counterfeit of a currency note or coin is guilty of an offence.

(3) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on conviction on indictment to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding—

(a) in the case of an offence under subsection (1), 10 years, or

(b) in the case of an offence under subsection (2), 5 years,

or both.

Custody or control of counterfeit currency notes and coins.

35. —(1) A person who has in his or her custody or under his or her control any thing which is, and which he or she knows or believes to be, a counterfeit of a currency note or coin, intending either—

(a) to pass or tender it as genuine, or

(b) to deliver it to another with the intention that that person or any other person shall pass or tender it as genuine,

is guilty of an offence.

(2) A person who, without lawful authority or excuse, has in his or her custody or under his or her control any thing which is, and which he or she knows or believes to be, a counterfeit of a currency note or coin is guilty of an offence.

(3) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on conviction on indictment to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding—

(a) in the case of an offence under subsection (1), 10 years, or

(b) in the case of an offence under subsection (2), 5 years,

or both.

Materials and implements for counterfeiting.

36. —(1) A person who makes, or has in his or her custody or under his or her control, any thing which he or she intends to use, or to permit any other person to use, for the purpose of making a counterfeit of a currency note or coin with the intention that it be passed or tendered as genuine is guilty of an offence.

(2) A person who, without lawful authority or excuse, has in his or her custody or under his or her control any thing which is or has been specially designed or adapted for making a counterfeit of a currency note or coin is guilty of an offence.

(3) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on conviction on indictment to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding—

(a) in the case of an offence under subsection (1), 10 years, or

(b) in the case of an offence under subsection (2), 5 years,

or both.

Import and export of counterfeits.

37. —(1) A person who without lawful authority or excuse imports into, or exports from, a member state of the European Union a counterfeit of a currency note or coin is guilty of an offence.

(2) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on conviction on indictment to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years or both.

Certain offences committed outside the State.

38. —(1) A person who outside the State does any act referred to in section 33 , 34, 35, 36 or 37 is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction on indictment to the penalty specified for such an act in the section concerned.

(2) Section 46 shall apply in relation to an offence under subsection (1) as it applies in relation to an offence under section 45 .

Measures to detect counterfeiting.

39. —(1) In this section—

“designated body” means:

(a) a body licensed to carry on banking business under the Central Bank Act, 1971 , or authorised to carry on such business under the ACC Bank Acts, 1978 to 2001, or regulations under the European Communities Acts, 1972 to 1998,

(b) a building society within the meaning of the Building Societies Act, 1989 ,

(c) a trustee savings bank within the meaning of the Trustee Savings Banks Acts, 1989 and 2001,

(d) An Post,

(e) a credit union within the meaning of the Credit Union Act, 1997 ,

(f) a person or body authorised under the Central Bank Act, 1997 , to provide bureau de change business,

(g) a person who in the course of business provides a service of sorting and redistributing currency notes or coins,

(h) any other person or body—

(i) whose business consists of or includes the provision of services involving the acceptance, exchange, transfer or holding of money for or on behalf of other persons or bodies, and

(ii) who is designated for the purposes of this section by regulations made by the Minister after consultation with the Minister for Finance; and

“recognised code of practice” means a code of practice drawn up for the purposes of this section—

(a) by a designated body or class of designated bodies and approved by the Central Bank of Ireland, or

(b) by the Central Bank of Ireland for a designated body or class of such bodies.

(2) A designated body shall—

(a) withdraw from circulation any notes or coins received by it or tendered to it which it knows or suspects to be counterfeit, and

(b) transmit them as soon as possible to the Central Bank of Ireland with such information as to the time, location and circumstances of their receipt as may be available.

(3) Counterfeit or suspect currency notes or coins may be transmitted to the Garda Síochána under subsection (2) in accordance with a recognised code of practice.

(4) A recognised code of practice may include provision for—

(a) procedures to be followed by directors or other officers and employees of a designated body in the conduct of its business,

(b) instructions to them on the application of this section,

(c) standards of training in the identification of counterfeit notes and coins,

(d) procedures to be followed by them on perceiving or suspecting that currency notes or coins are counterfeit,

(e) different such procedures to be followed in respect of different currencies,

(f) the retention of documents required for the purposes of criminal proceedings.

(5) Without prejudice to section 58 , a designated body which contravenes a provision of subsection (2) of this section or who provides false or misleading information on matters referred to in those subsections is guilty of an offence under this section and liable—

(a) on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding £1,500 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or both, or

(b) on conviction on indictment, to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years or both.

(6) It shall be a defence in proceedings for an offence under this section—

(a) for a designated body to show—

(i) that it had established procedures to enable this section to be complied with, or

(ii) that it had complied with the relevant provisions of a recognised code of practice,

and

(b) for a person employed by a designated body to show that he or she transmitted the currency notes or coins concerned, or gave the relevant information, to another person in accordance with an internal reporting procedure or a recognised code of practice.

(7) Where a designated body, a director, other officer or employee of the body—

(a) discloses in good faith to a member of the Garda Síochána or any person concerned in the investigation or prosecution of an offence under this Part a suspicion that a currency note or coin is counterfeit or any matter on which such a suspicion is based, or

(b) otherwise complies in good faith with subsection (2) or with a recognised code of practice,

such disclosure or compliance shall not be treated as a breach of any restriction imposed by statute or otherwise on the disclosure of information or involve the person or body making the disclosure in liability in any proceedings.

(8) Every regulation made under this section shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas as soon as may be after it is made and, if a resolution annulling it is passed by either such House within the next 21 days on which that House has sat after the regulation is laid before it, the regulation shall be annulled accordingly, but without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under it.