Legislation

The Act on the Danish Security and Intelligence Service (the PET Act)

On 01 January 2014, the PET Act took effect.

The act is based on white paper No. 1529/2012 on the Danish intelligence services submitted by the Committee regarding the Danish Security and Intelligence Service (PET) and the Danish Defence Intelligence Service (DDIS) (the Wendler-Petersen Committee). The committee, whose members come from a wide range of areas, was established in 1998 with the purpose of preparing suggestions for a more unified regulation of PET's activities.

A new oversight board, which has replaced the so-called Wamberg Committee, was established in connection with the PET Act. The board, which has been named the Danish Intelligence Oversight Board, is an independent body with its own secretariat, cf. Chapter 9 of the PET Act. One of the tasks of the board is to supervise PET's handling of personal data, and the board has access to all information and material which is of relevance to the activities of the board.

Moreover, a physical or legal entity can ask the board to examine whether PET is wrongfully handling information concerning the entity in question, cf. Chapter 8 of the PET Act. Having established that this is not the case, the Oversight Board will notify the individual or entity in question.

The following has been regulated by the PET Act:

• When PET is allowed by law to collect and obtain information, cf. Chapter 2 of the PET Act
• Which conditions must be met in order for PET to handle collected and obtained information internally, cf. Chapter 5 of the PET Act
• In which cases PET is allowed to pass on information to other Danish  administrative authorities, private  entities, foreign authorities and international organisations, cf. Chapter 6 of the PET Act.
The PET Act furthermore contains regulations on:
• The tasks of the intelligence service, cf. Chapter 1 of the PET Act
• The investigative efforts of the intelligence service, cf. Chapter 3 of the PET Act
• The use by the intelligence service of investigative and coercive measures related to criminal procedure (e.g. telephone interceptions and searches), cf. Chapter 4 of the PET Act
• Legal political activities, cf. Chapter 7 of the PET Act

The PET Act can be accessed from here.
https://www.retsinformation.dk/Forms/R0710.aspx?id=165838

Chapters 12 and 13 of the Danish Criminal Code

Section 1 (1)(1) of the Danish Criminal Code states that PET is assigned to prevent, investigate and counter crimes against the independence and security of the state and crimes against the constitution and supreme authorities of the state, cf. Chapters 12 and 13 of the Danish Criminal Code.

Among the central provisions of Chapters 12 and 13 of the Danish Criminal Code are:
• Sections 107 to 109 (espionage)
• Section 114 to 114e (terrorism and similar crimes), and
• Sections 114f-114g and 118 (crimes where extremist and undemocratic methods are used to achieve political, ideological or religious goals).

Notice on PET's handling of information related to physical and legal entities etc.

On 01 July 2014, notice No. 763 dated 20 June 2014 from the Ministry of Justice came into force. This notice deals with PET's handling of information related to physical and legal entities etc.

The notice was promulgated pursuant to the PET Act.

Some of the regulations in the notice deal with:
• the records, databases etc. of the intelligence service, cf. Chapter 1
• the internal personnel matters and security clearances of the intelligence service, cf. Chapter 2
• the procedures in connection with investigations and the authorisation of certain investigative measures, cf. Chapter 3
• the collection and passing of information, cf. Chapter 4
• internal supervision
• briefing of the Intelligence Oversight Board, cf. Chapter 6, and
• storage for state archives, cf. Chapter 7

The notice can be accessed from here.
https://www.retsinformation.dk/Forms/R0710.aspx?id=164082

Internal guidelines at PET

In order to support the ongoing legality supervision at PET, internal guidelines concerning case processing and supervisory control have been formulated within a number of areas.

This is e.g. the case with regard to the procedure for implementing investigative steps, cf. Section 5 of the PET Act concerning the collection of information, according to Section 4 of the PET Act, and the passing of information, cf. Section 10 of the PET Act.