Carolina Bracken

Carolina is a criminal barrister at 5 Paper Buildings. Her practice encompasses a broad variety of criminal and quasi-criminal cases, including professional disciplinary and regulatory matters. Carolina often prosecutes on behalf of Local Authorities in environmental, planning, and health and safety cases, with a particular emphasis on consumer and trading standards prosecutions. As she is often instructed to advise pre-charge, she understands the powers available to investigators, and the particular sensitivities of the investigation process. In addition, Carolina often represents professional clients in disciplinary proceedings following the linked criminal prosecution. An unusually significant part of her practice involves confiscation proceedings under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, and she frequently deploys her knowledge of property law and trusts when representing third party interveners. In confiscation proceedings, she has acted for defendants involved in one of the largest heroin seizures, and the largest mortgage fraud investigation, in England and Wales. Prior to coming to the Bar, Carolina worked for the Crown Prosecution Service, and for a Westminster-based think tank conducting research into criminal justice policy with a focus on education in prison.

Contributed to

10

Acquisition and disclosure of communications data under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016
Practice notes

This Practice Note explains the how communications data can be lawfully obtained and disclosed by public authorities under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016). It explains the lawful interception of communications, the types of interception warrants which can be obtained, including targeted interception warrants, targeted examination warrants and mutual assistance warrants, applications for warrants and information which are excluded from warrants. The safeguards in place for obtaining communications data, specifically in relation to legally privileged material and journalist material are explained as well as the offences of unauthorised disclosure, and knowingly fail to comply with the obligation to give effect to an interception warrant.

Communications data retention
Practice notes

This Practice Note explains the power to retain communications data under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 and draws comparisons with the power contained under its predecessor legislation, the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act 2014 (DRIPA 2014). It also explains the background to the retention of communications data following the declaration of the invalidity of the EU Data Retention Directive 2006/24/EC and the introduction of DRIPA 2014 as well as the ruling of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in the joined cases of C-203/15 Tele2 Sverige and C-698/15 Watson on the compatibility of DRIPA 2014, s 1 with EU law.

Equipment interference under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016
Practice notes

This Practice Note explains the provisions of the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016) relating to equipment interference. It covers the purpose and scope of targeted equipment interference warrants which authorise or require a person to secure interference with any equipment for the purpose of obtaining communications, equipment data, or any other information. It also covers targeted examination warrants which authorise the selection for examination of protected material acquired under a bulk equipment interference warrants. The Practice Note also explains the power to issue targeted equipment interference warrants and targeted examination warrants, the approval of warrants by Judicial Commissioners and the safeguards in place to protect legally privileged and journalistic material from disclosure under targeted equipment interference warrants and targeted examination warrants. It also covers the offence of failure to satisfy the duty not to make unauthorised disclosures under IPA 2016, s 134.

Interception of communications under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016
Practice notes

This Practice Note explains the offences contained in the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016) which relate to the interception of communications (including phone tapping or phone hacking) including the unlawful interception of communications data under IPA 2016, s 3 and explores what constitutes ‘lawful authority’. The offences of failing to comply with the duty not to make an unauthorised disclosure and the deliberate selection for examination of material collected under a bulk interception warrant are explained. This Practice Note also includes the procedure for obtaining an interception warrant, a mutual assistance warrant or a bulk interception warrant and how intercepted communications can be used in legal proceedings.

Scrutiny of intelligence gathering and the role of commissioners under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016
Practice notes

This Practice Note explains the independent oversight arrangements for the use of surveillance and intelligence gathering powers under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016). It explains the role of the Investigatory Powers Commissioner (IPC) and Judicial Commissioners.

Surveillance and intelligence gathering powers of the FCA
Practice notes

This Practice Note explains the power of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to use surveillance and other intelligence gathering powers under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA 2000) and the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016) to obtain information for the prevention and detection of crime. It explains the power of acquire communications data, to carry out covert surveillance, the use of covert human intelligence sources (CHIS) and the power to require encryption keys or passwords to access encrypted electronic data.

Surveillance powers of local councils
Practice notes

This Practice Note explains the statutory powers of local councils to carry out covert surveillance or obtain communications data under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA 2000) and the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016) which is in the process of coming into force. It explains which covert surveillance powers are available to local authorities, the use of surveillance cameras and CCTV with reference to the Surveillance Camera Code of Practice, surveillance inspection and practice and the making of applications for authorisations for the acquisition of communications data. The Practice Note also explains the impact of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 on surveillance.

Other work

Obtaining authorisations for communications data for local councils—checklist

This Checklist summarises the requirements on local authorities seeking an authorisation to acquire communications data under Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA 2000) and the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016). It explains the authorisations and safeguards required for the use of covert human intelligence sources (CHIS), authorisation for directed surveillance, authorisation for the acquisition of data and the impact of failing to obtain the required authorisations.

Offences under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016—checklist

This Checklist sets out the criminal offences created by the Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016). The Checklist highlights the available statutory defences and the maximum sentence and penalties which can be imposed on conviction. It covers unlawful interception of communications data, unlawfully obtaining communications data, failure to comply with the duty to give targets interception or assistance with a warrant, making unauthorised disclosures (tipping off), making unauthorised disclosures of communications data, equipment interference or of bulk interception and bulk acquisition warrants and breaching safeguards relating to the examination of data.

Powers of public authorities under the Investigatory Powers Act 2016—checklist

This Checklist sets out which public authorities which have covert surveillance powers under Part 3 and Schedule 4 of Investigatory Powers Act 2016 (IPA 2016), including the power to acquire communications data. The Checklist sets out the relevant public authorities who can obtain communications data, and the purposes for which such data can be obtained, as provided for in IPA 2016, Sch 4

Practice areas

Membership

  • Inner Temple
  • Young Fraud Lawyers Association
  • The Female Fraud Forum
  • Association of Regulatory and Disciplinary Lawyers

Panel

  • Case Analysis Panel
  • Contributing Author

Education

  • LLB (Hons) First Class, LSE
  • BPTC, Outstanding, City University

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