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United Kingdom: Consultation on Additional Drone Regulations Proposed

(Jan. 18, 2017) The Government of the United Kingdom recently issued a consultation document that contains additional proposals for the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), or drones.  Drone technology is of growing economic importance; it is estimated it will be worth £102 billion (about US$126 billion) by 2025.  The government wishes Britain to become “the global go-to place for […]

United Kingdom: Identification Trial at Polls to Prevent Electoral Fraud

(Jan. 5, 2017) The Government of the United Kingdom recently announced its intention to hold trials in certain polling stations to combat electoral fraud by requiring voters to show photographic identification, such as a driving license or passport, in order to receive a ballot paper to vote.  This is one of a number of measures introduced as a result […]

United Kingdom: Border Force Has Bumper Haul of Seized Christmas Counterfeit Goods

(Jan. 5, 2017) Border Force, a law enforcement agency within the Home Office that is responsible for securing the borders of the United Kingdom through enforcing immigration and customs controls, seized more than 83,000 counterfeit items, with an estimated value of £3.5 million (about US$4.3 million) at airports during just six days in December 2016.  […]

United Kingdom: Legislation Proposed to Ban Micro-Beads in Cosmetics and Soaps by October 2017

(Dec. 29, 2016) Microbeads, also known as micro plastics, are tiny plastic beads added as exfoliators to face scrubs, toothpaste, and shower gels. The House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee found that around 680 tons of microbeads are used in the United Kingdom annually, and each shower with a product containing these beads can send […]

United Kingdom: Domestic Far Right Political Group Banned Under Terrorism Law

(Dec. 29, 2016) National Action, a neo-Nazi group established in the United Kingdom in 2013, is the first extreme right-wing group to be proscribed as a terrorist organization under the UK’s Terrorism Act 2000. (The Terrorism Act 2000 (Proscribed Organisations) (Amendment) (No. 3) Order 2016, SI 2016/1238, LEGISLATION.GOV.UK.)  The Secretary of State found that the […]

United Kingdom: Record-Breaking Multi-Million Dollar Fine Imposed on Drug Companies for Charging Excessive Prices

(Dec. 23, 2016) The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) of the United Kingdom, an independent non-ministerial department responsible for promoting competition, has fined pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Flynn Pharma a record-breaking £90 million (about US$113 million) for charging excessive and unfair prices in the UK for an anti-epilepsy drug known as phenytoin sodium.  (Press Release, […]

United Kingdom: Vessel Owner Fined for Overfishing

(Dec. 20, 2016) A recent inspection of a fishing vessel by the Marine Management Organisation of the United Kingdom found approximately 2.65 metric tons of undersized scallops (110 millimeters or smaller), which totaled  8.09 % of the catch of the vessel.  (Master and Owner Fined £21,746 for Fisheries Offences, Marine Management Organisation  (Dec. 14, 2016).)  […]

United Kingdom: Office of Tax Simplification Placed on Statutory Basis

(Dec. 20, 2016) The Office of Tax Simplification, part of Her Majesty’s Treasury, was recently placed on a statutory basis by Part 12 of the Finance Act 2016 (Finance Act 2016, c. 24, Part 12 & Sched. 25, LEGISLATION.GOV.UK), which was brought into force on November 28, 2016, by a recent set of regulations of […]

United Kingdom: Surveillance Activity by UK Intelligence Agencies Ruled Unlawful

(Dec. 8, 2016) The Investigatory Powers Tribunal ruled on October 17, 2016, that the British Intelligence Agencies unlawfully collected the confidential personal data of British citizens in bulk for 17 years, from 1998 to 2015, when the activities were publicly acknowledged.  (Privacy International v. Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, [2016] UKIPTrib 15_110-CH.) The ruling was […]

United Kingdom: Controversial Surveillance Act Receives Royal Assent

(Dec. 8, 2016) The Investigatory Powers Act, which has been under consideration for the past year and in various forms for the past few years, was recently enacted into law when it received Royal Assent.  It was introduced in draft form in autumn of 2015 (Draft Investigatory Powers Bill 2015, 2015-16 Cm. 9152, GOV.UK), as […]