Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Ban on Cash Transactions for Scrap Metal Trade

Due to the increasingly high value of metalin the UK, the crime rate for stolen scrap metal was on rise. The feeble laws surrounding the scrap metal trade, worked in the favour of unscrupulous scrap metals yard owners, traders and recyclers. The administration in England and Wales took up the matter in the House of Commons and passed the new controversial rule. On the 3rd of December, a legislation banning all cash transactions at recycling yards came in to effect. The legislation stated that scrap metal dealers would now be forced to carry out trade via electronic payments or cheque. They would also be required to maintain a record of all transactions and deals made. The legislation also stated that anyone found guilty of disobeying the new statutory law would be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Offenders would be liable to pay heavy fines or even have their license cancelled. The audit trail that is facilitated by the legislature will lead back to all parties who profit through metal theft.

Amendments to the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders (LASPO) Act will mean that all cash transactions for metal at recycling yards will be outlawed.  The new Act also gives the police force the necessary jurisdiction to enter scrap metal yards at will and ascertain whether the ban on cash payments is being complied with. If protocol is found to be breached, the employee responsible for making the payment, the management, and the company that has failed to take reasonable steps to prevent payment being made will be prosecuted.

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The BTP (British transport police) deputy chief constable Paul Crowther stated that metal theft was a serious threat to the infrastructure of Great Britain and that the outdated legislation has been exploited unscrupulous metal recyclers for far too long.

The British authorities also hope that these measures will have a negative impact on the market for stolen metal as well as illegal scrap metal recycling and that the severe sanctions will deter anyone from metal theft. However, this new legislation cannot function in isolation and will require the cooperation and support of the industry, police and other agencies.

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