James Hamilton appointed as chair of new white collar crime body
James Hamilton, a former director of public prosecutions, has been appointed as chair of the government’s new Advisory Council against Economic Crime and Corruption (ACECC).
Mr Hamilton previously led the government’s review of structures and strategies to prevent, investigate and penalise economic crime and corruption, which recommended the establishment of such an advisory council.
The new body will advise and make proposals on strategic and policy responses and will be responsible for developing a multi-annual strategy to combat economic crime and corruption, as well as an action plan, which will be finalised by the justice minister and submitted to the government for approval.
It will also serve as an Irish ‘centre of excellence’ co-ordinating research and analysis, training, public education and awareness-raising, and promoting best practice.
Justice minister Helen McEntee said: “We must ensure that we have the tools, policies and strategies to tackle economic crime and corruption. Ireland must also be at the forefront of international efforts to tackle and vigorously pursue criminals who undermine confidence in our economic system and damage economies themselves.
“That’s why I am pleased to announce the government’s approval to formally establish the Advisory Council against Economic Crime and Corruption and to nominate the chair and a number of members to the council.
“The council’s independent chair, James Hamilton, has already provided the State with many years of service through his years as director of public prosecutions and more recently his chairmanship of the group which carried out the review into structures and strategies to prevent, investigate and penalise economic crime and corruption.
“I am confident that he and the council will provide outstanding advice and guidance to the government, as well as across the Irish economy and society, on how we can tackle white collar crime and corruption.”
The ACECC will have 19 members plus Mr Hamilton as chair. As well as 13 members representing various government departments and state agencies, six ordinary members – including Mr Hamilton – will represent the business and financial sector, academia, and civil society.
The other five ordinary members are forensic accountant Barry Robinson and solicitor Joanelle O’Cleirigh, representing the business and financial sector; Raj Chari, professor of political science at Trinity College Dublin, and Robert Gillanders, economist and director of Dublin City University Centre against Corruption, representing academia; and Niamh O’Regan, non-executive director, and Patricia King from the Irish Congress of Trade Unions to represent civil society.