chapter  2
18 Pages

The United Kingdom

British law and policy with respect to charities and terrorist finance have, in one key respect, been consistent with developments in the United States and other countries. British law allows proscription of terrorist organizations, and bans supporting proscribed organizations, such as helping them arrange or manage meetings to further their activities. British law also more broadly bans fundraising and making various kinds of funding arrangements for ‘purposes of terrorism’, and prohibits retention or control of ‘terrorist property’, among other provisions. But government policy has gradually expanded to the point that

new legislation adopted in 2006, the Terrorism Act 2006, criminalizes not only direct support for terrorist organizations and activities, but also ‘encouragement’, ‘glorifying’, and other activities more closely related to speech and association. This seemingly inexorable expansion of mandates for the charitable sector puts particular pressure on charitable organizations affiliated with certain religious and ethnic groups or engaging in certain political activities (Fitzgerald and Gallagher 2007). Before the additional legislation put in place in 2006, the primary

anti-terrorism legislation affecting charities in the United Kingdom was the Terrorism Act 2000, which entered into force before the September 11 attacks in February 2001. The Terrorism Act 2000 gives the Home Secretary authority to proscribe certain organizations if the Secretary ‘believes that it is concerned in terrorism’. ‘Concerned in terrorism’ is defined broadly: ‘commits or participates in acts of terrorism, prepares for terrorism, promotes or encourages terrorism, or is otherwise concerned in terrorism either in the UK or abroad’. And the group concerned may be ‘any association or combination of persons’. Membership in a proscribed organization is illegal, as is assisting, fundraising, funding, supporting, or displaying support for such an organization. All property of a proscribed organization may be seized by the government.

Organizations are allowed to apply for de-proscription, and an appeals process is provided for organizations denied de-proscription (Terrorism Act 2000; Charity Commission of England and Wales 2003a). The Terrorism Act 2000 also criminalized membership in a pro-

scribed organization, prohibited various forms of support for proscribed organizations, which makes vulnerable to prosecution one who ‘invites support’ for a proscribed organization (not limited to financial support, ‘arranges, manages or assists’ in arranging meetings for a proscribed organization, or wears the uniform of a proscribed organization) (Terrorism Act 2000, sections 11-13). More broadly the Terrorism Act 2000 criminalized fund-raising for ‘purposes of terrorism’; using money or other property for purposes of terrorism; undertaking other funding arrangements for purposes of terrorism; or engaging in broadly defined money laundering of terrorist property (Terrorism Act 2000, sections 14-19). In addition to these powers, the Charity Commission has the statutory power under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 and the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 to ‘send “Covert Human Intelligences Sources” … i.e. spies or undercover agents, to work in charities that are under suspicion’ (Fitzgerald and Gallagher 2007).