Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Law & Order : MacAskill tours Scotland's 'crime campus'

Scotland’s Justice Secretary, Kenny MacAskill toured the Gartcosh crime campus (to be finished for late 2011), which will bring together on one site, all the key law enforcement agencies in Scotland. (and they let him escape ? –Ed)

Scottish Government Press Release :

Scottish Crime Campus


The crime campus which will bring together on one site the key law enforcement agencies is on track for occupation in late 2011.

Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill today visited the site at Gartcosh to signal the Scottish Government's commitment to the national crime busting campus.

It will include the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency (SCDEA), the Scottish Police Services Authority (SPSA) Forensic Services (Glasgow), Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) and Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

Kenny MacAskill said:

"The Scottish Government is fully committed to the creation of a crime campus to lead the fight against serious organised crime in Scotland. The work is underway and I expect the campus to be operational by late 2011.

"Bringing together key staff from the SCDEA, SPSA Forensic Services (Glasgow), COPFS, SOCA and HMRC under one roof will help them work together more effectively in purpose-built facilities with the latest state-of-the-art technology.

"This sends out a strong message to the criminal gangs that we will use every means at our disposal to protect our communities from the threat they pose.

"The new powers in the Criminal Justice and Licensing bill send these gangsters, and the people who help them control their empires and manage their financial affairs, a strong message that they will not be able to operate in Scotland with impunity.

"The new offence of directing serious organised crime is aimed at making it easier to convict those who direct crime but distance themselves from the activity on a day to day basis.

"By targetting those people who direct crime, or those, who chose to turn a blind eye to it, and monitoring these crooks financial affairs, we are putting them on notice that this Government, working with the other members of the Serious Organised Crime Taskforce is determined to take them on and take them down."

The Scottish Crime Campus at Gartcosh is a major construction project that will house Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency, Scottish Police Services Authority Forensic Service (Glasgow), Crown Office Procurator Fiscal Service, HM Revenue & Customs and the Serious Organised Crime Agency under one roof.

The strategic aim of the project is to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of partner organisations in combating crime and supporting other organisations to do so. Key project aims focus on building a new facility that will enable the stakeholder agencies to maximise their combined operational effectiveness and efficiency and which demonstrates value for money in terms of quality, cost and time.

The budget for the Crime Campus is £65 million. Current cost estimates indicate that the project should be delivered within that overall budget.

Detailed ground investigation surveys have revealed that there are substantial underground obstructions and foundations remaining from the steelworks that were previously located on the site.

This package of work has been competitively tendered in the open market and DCT Civil Engineering Ltd was awarded the contract and started work on site on March 23, 2009. The contract involves removing obstructions both within and around the area of the building and crushing then recycling the materials for reuse later on in the construction process. Once the enabling works are complete this will enable the main contractor to make a quicker start on the construction works.

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