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[Senate Treaty Document 111-6]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]


111th Congress
2d Session                      SENATE                     Treaty Doc.
111-6
_______________________________________________________________________

                                     

 
              MUTUAL LEGAL ASSISTANCE TREATY WITH BERMUDA

                               __________

                                MESSAGE

                                  from

                 THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES

                              transmitting

 TREATY BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND THE 
 GOVERNMENT OF BERMUDA RELATING TO MUTUAL LEGAL ASSISTANCE IN CRIMINAL 
            MATTERS, SIGNED AT HAMILTON ON JANUARY 12, 2009




 June 29, 2010.--Treaty was read the first time, and together with the 
accompanying papers, referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations and 
            ordered to be printed for the use of the Senate


                         LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL

                              ----------                              

                                    The White House, June 29, 2010.
To the Senate of the United States:
    With a view to receiving the advice and consent of the 
Senate to ratification, I transmit herewith the Treaty between 
the Government of the United States of America and the 
Government of Bermuda relating to Mutual Legal Assistance in 
Criminal Matters, signed at Hamilton on January 12, 2009. I 
also transmit, for the information of the Senate, the report of 
the Department of State with respect to the Treaty.
    The Treaty is one of a series of modern mutual legal 
assistance treaties being negotiated by the United States to 
more effectively counter criminal activities. The Treaty should 
enhance our ability to investigate and prosecute a wide variety 
of crimes.
    The Treaty provides for a broad range of cooperation in 
criminal matters. Under the Treaty, the Parties agree to assist 
each other by, among other things: producing evidence (such as 
testimony, documents, or items) obtained voluntarily or, where 
necessary, by compulsion; arranging for persons, including 
persons in custody, to travel to the other country to provide 
evidence; serving documents; executing searches and seizures; 
locating and identifying persons or items; and freezing and 
forfeiting assets or property that may be the proceeds or 
instrumentalities of crime.
    I recommend that the Senate give early and favorable 
consideration to the Treaty, and give its advice and consent to 
ratification.

                                                      Barack Obama.
                          LETTER OF SUBMITTAL

                              ----------                              

                                       Department of State,
                                     Washington, DC, March 1, 2010.
The President,
The White House.
    The President: I have the honor to submit to you the Treaty 
between the Government of the United States of America and the 
Government of Bermuda relating to Mutual Legal Assistance in 
Criminal Matters, signed at Hamilton on January 12, 2009. I 
recommend that the Treaty be transmitted to the Senate for its 
advice and consent to ratification.
    The Treaty covers mutual legal assistance in criminal 
matters. In recent years, the United States has entered into 
similar bilateral treaties with a number of countries. This 
Treaty contains all of the essential provisions of such 
treaties sought by the United States. It will enhance our 
ability to investigate and prosecute a wide variety of 
offenses. The Treaty is self-executing and will not require 
further implementing legislation.
    An overview of the Treaty, including a detailed, article-
by-article analysis, is enclosed with this report. The 
Department of Justice joins the Department of State in favoring 
approval of this Treaty by the Senate at the earliest possible 
date.
    Respectfully submitted.
                                            Hillary Rodham Clinton.
    Enclosures: As stated.

              U.S.-Bermuda Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty


                                OVERVIEW

    The Treaty between the Government of the United States of 
America and the Government of Bermuda relating to Mutual Legal 
Assistance in Criminal Matters creates for the first time a 
treaty-based relationship of mutual legal assistance between 
the United States and Bermuda.
    Bermuda is an overseas territory of the United Kingdom and 
prior to signature, the United States obtained from the United 
Kingdom, under cover of a diplomatic note, a copy of the 
entrustment letter to Bermuda, through which the United Kingdom 
granted Bermuda the authority to sign and conclude the Treaty.
    The following is an article-by-article description of the 
provisions of the Treaty.
    Article 1 sets out the scope of assistance available under 
the Treaty. Article 1(1) creates an international obligation on 
each Party to provide mutual legal assistance to the other 
Party in connection with the investigation, prosecution, and 
prevention of criminal offenses for which the maximum penalty 
is deprivation of liberty for at least one year, and in 
``proceedings related to criminal matters.'' In limiting the 
applicability of the Treaty to offenses for which the maximum 
penalty is at least one year imprisonment, this provision makes 
clear that the Treaty is to be used for requests relating to 
serious offenses. There is no other limit on the types of 
offenses for which assistance can be requested. Thus, as with 
U.S. mutual legal assistance treaties (MLATs) generally, 
assistance under the Treaty is available for a broad range of 
criminal matters, from violent crimes to fraud, from tax 
matters to racketeering, from computer crime to environmental 
crime, and so on.
    The seriousness of the offense is to be measured by the 
penalty provisions in the state making the request. As noted 
below, there is no general requirement in the Treaty that the 
conduct constitute an offense, let alone a serious offense, in 
both countries. In addition, the negotiators expressed the view 
that where a request related to an investigation or prosecution 
of a person for multiple offenses, at least one of which met 
this threshold, the Treaty would apply as well to the other 
``lesser included offenses.''
    ``Proceedings related to criminal matters'' is defined in 
Article 21 of the Treaty to encompass any measure or step taken 
in connection with the investigation or prosecution of serious 
criminal offenses, including specifically forfeiture 
proceedings, as well as ancillary civil or administrative 
proceedings when they relate to securities matters. Thus, 
assistance would be available for proceedings of the Securities 
and Exchange Commission when those proceedings are incidental 
to or connected with pending criminal investigations and 
prosecutions. The Treaty also permits the Parties, at their 
discretion, to treat as ``proceedings related to criminal 
matters'' any administrative investigation that might result in 
the imposition of civil or administrative sanctions.
    Article 1(2) contains a non-exhaustive list of the major 
types of assistance to be provided under the Treaty, including 
producing evidence (such as testimony, documents, or items) 
obtained voluntarily or, where necessary, by compulsion; 
arranging for persons, including persons in custody, to travel 
to another country to provide evidence; serving documents; 
executing searches and seizures; locating and identifying 
persons or items; and freezing and forfeiting assets or 
property that may be the proceeds or instrumentalities of 
crime. Each of these types of assistance is described in detail 
in subsequent articles in the Treaty.
    The Treaty also authorizes provision of any other 
assistance not inconsistent with the laws of the state 
receiving the request (referred to in the Treaty, as in other 
such treaties, as the ``Requested Party,'' while the state 
making the request is the ``Requesting Party''). As long as 
there is no specific legal restriction in the Requested Party 
barring the type of assistance requested, it may be provided 
pursuant to the Treaty.
    Consistent with most U.S. MLATs, Article 1(3) provides 
that, with the exception of where it is specifically required 
by the Treaty, ``dual criminality'' is not a prerequisite for 
assistance under the Treaty. Thus, assistance shall be provided 
without regard to whether the conduct at issue would constitute 
an offense under the laws of the Requested Party. One specific 
``dual criminality'' requirement is found in Article 15, 
relating to search and seizure. Either Party may refuse a 
request to execute a search or seizure if such authority would 
not be available under its own law with respect to the conduct 
in question.
    Article 1(4), a standard provision in U.S. MLATs, provides 
that the Treaty is intended solely for government-to-government 
mutual legal assistance. The Treaty is not intended to provide 
to private persons a means of evidence gathering, nor is it 
intended to extend generally to civil matters. Private persons 
in the United States may continue to obtain evidence from 
Bermuda by letters rogatory, an avenue of international 
assistance that the Treaty leaves undisturbed. Similarly, the 
paragraph provides that the Treaty is not intended to create 
any right in a private person to suppress or exclude evidence 
provided pursuant to the Treaty, or to impede the execution of 
a request.
    Article 2 requires that each Party designate a ``Central 
Authority'' to make and receive Treaty requests. The Central 
Authority of the United States would make all requests to 
Bermuda on behalf of federal and state agencies and local law 
enforcement authorities in the United States. The Central 
Authority of Bermuda would make all requests emanating from 
officials in Bermuda. The Central Authorities are, pursuant to 
Article 2(3), to communicate directly with one another.
    In each state, the Central Authority is to be the Attorney 
General or a person designated by the Attorney General. In the 
United States, the authority to handle the duties of the 
Central Authority under MLATs has been delegated to the Office 
of International Affairs in the Criminal Division of the 
Department of Justice.
    The Central Authority of the Requesting Party exercises 
discretion as to the form and content of requests, as well as 
the number and priority of requests. The Central Authority of 
the Requested Party is responsible for receiving and evaluating 
each incoming request; transmitting it to the proper agency, 
court, or other authority for execution; and effecting a timely 
response.
    Article 3 sets forth the circumstances under which the 
Requested Party's Central Authority may deny assistance under 
the Treaty. Refusal under this Article is discretionary with 
the Central Authority of the Requested Party. Several of the 
grounds for refusal are common to most U.S. MLATs. So, for 
example, a request may be denied if it relates to a political 
or a military offense, if it does not conform to the 
requirements of the Treaty, or if its execution would impair 
the sovereignty, security, or other essential interests of the 
Requested Party, or would be contrary to important public 
policy. With respect to this last ground, the government of 
Bermuda indicated that it intends to interpret the provision to 
give Bermuda the right to deny assistance in cases involving 
capital punishment. Although the United States made clear in 
negotiations its view that assistance should be possible in 
such cases, the United States indicated to Bermuda that it 
understood Bermuda's intention.
    The other ground for refusal of assistance, which also 
appears in a number of U.S. MLATs, is when a request relates to 
an offender who, if proceeded against in the Requested Party 
for the offense for which assistance is requested, would be 
entitled to be discharged on the grounds of a previous 
acquittal or conviction.
    In keeping with the overall intent of the Treaty to 
facilitate assistance, the Parties also included in Article 3 a 
provision designed to limit the use of grounds for refusal. 
Under Article 3(2), a Central Authority, before refusing 
assistance under Article 3(1), is to consult with its 
counterpart in the Requesting Party to consider whether 
assistance can be given subject to such conditions as the 
Central Authority of the Requested Party deems necessary. If 
the Requesting Party accepts assistance subject to these 
conditions, it is required to comply with them. In addition, if 
the Central Authority of the Requested Party refuses 
assistance, it is required under Article 3(3) to inform the 
Central Authority of the Requesting Party of the reasons for 
the refusal.
    Article 4 prescribes the form and contents of requests 
under the Treaty, specifying in detail the information required 
in each request.
    Article 5 concerns the execution of requests. Article 5(1) 
includes two important concepts: the requirement that the 
Requested Party take ``whatever steps it deems necessary'' as 
empowered by the Treaty or national law to execute requests; 
and the granting of authority to courts in the Requested Party 
to issue subpoenas, search warrants, or other orders necessary 
to execute requests. Taken together, these provisions 
specifically authorize United States courts to use all of their 
powers to issue whatever process is necessary to satisfy a 
request under the Treaty, whether the authority for such 
process comes from the Treaty itself or from existing statutes. 
Article 5(2) builds on this by requiring the Central Authority 
to ensure that requests, where necessary, are presented to 
appropriate judicial or administrative authorities for action. 
This provision reflects an understanding that the Parties 
intend to provide each other with every available form of 
assistance from judicial and executive branches of government 
in the execution of mutual legal assistance requests.
    Article 5(3) addresses the manner in which requests are to 
be executed. It creates a hierarchy for a Requested Party to 
follow in determining the appropriate procedures for executing 
a request. In the first instance, requests themselves may 
specify a particular procedure to be followed, and such 
specified procedures are to be followed unless incompatible 
with the laws and practices of the Requested Party. This can be 
important to ensure that evidence collected in one state 
satisfies requirements for admissibility at trial in the other. 
If no particular procedure is specified in the request, the 
request is to be executed in accordance with any specific 
provisions of the Treaty. Finally, if neither the Treaty nor 
the request specifies procedures to be followed, the Requested 
Party is to execute the request in accordance with its domestic 
criminal procedure laws. The intent of this provision, like 
similar provisions in other U.S. MLATs, is to allow the 
Requested Party to use its established procedures for obtaining 
evidence where procedures are not otherwise specified, so long 
as those procedures do not undermine the obligation in the 
Treaty to provide assistance. See, e.g., In re Commissioner's 
Subpoenas, 325 F.3d 1287 (11th Cir. 2003). In Bermuda, the 
relevant procedures are in the Criminal Justice (International 
Cooperation) (Bermuda) Act 1994.
    Article 5(4) allows the Central Authority of the Requested 
Party to postpone or condition the execution of a request if it 
determines that execution of the request would interfere with 
an ongoing criminal investigation, prosecution or proceeding in 
that state, or would prejudice the safety of any person in its 
territory. If the Requesting Party accepts assistance subject 
to such conditions, it must comply with them.
    Confidentiality of requests is addressed in Article 5(5). 
Although requests themselves are generally not confidential, 
the Requesting Party may ask that the request and its contents 
be kept confidential. The Requested Party is to use its best 
efforts to comply with such a request, but if assistance cannot 
be granted without breaching the confidentiality requirements, 
the decision whether to proceed is left to the Requesting 
Party.
    The remaining provisions in Article 5 address some of the 
types of communications between Central Authorities essential 
to a good working mutual legal assistance relationship. So, for 
example, Central Authorities are to notify each other of any 
problems with executing requests, respond to reasonable 
requests for progress reports, and inform each other promptly 
of the outcome of requests, including any reasons for denials, 
delay, or postponement of execution.
    Article 6 addresses the costs associated with providing 
assistance. As is standard in U.S. MLATs, Article 6 provides 
that the Requested Party must pay all costs relating to the 
execution of a request, including representation costs, except 
for the following items to be paid by the Requesting Party: 
fees of expert witnesses; costs of translation, interpretation 
and transcription; and allowances and expenses related to 
travel of persons pursuant to Articles 10 and 11 (relating to 
travel for the purpose of providing assistance and transfer of 
persons in custody). The article also provides that, in the 
event that fulfilling a request would require extraordinary 
expenses, consultation between Central Authorities shall occur 
in order to determine the terms and conditions for execution. 
Finally, if the Requested Party, through no fault of its own, 
incurs unexpected, extraordinary expenses the Central 
Authorities are to consult as to whether the Requesting Party 
should pay some or all of those expenses. The Parties discussed 
that such situations would be rare.
    Article 7 addresses limitations on use of information and 
evidence provided under the Treaty. Information or evidence 
provided under the Treaty may not be used or disclosed for any 
purpose other than for the proceedings stated in the request 
without the consent of the Central Authority of the Requested 
Party. The Central Authority of the Requested Party may also 
request that the information or evidence produced under the 
Treaty be kept confidential or be used subject to certain 
conditions (Article 7(2)). The default rule, however, is that 
such information or evidence is not confidential, and Article 
7(4) also provides that, unless otherwise indicated, once such 
information or evidence has been disclosed in a public judicial 
or administrative hearing related to the request, it may be 
used for any purpose. Moreover, the Treaty explicitly does not 
preclude the disclosure of information or evidence to the 
extent that there is an obligation to disclose it under the 
Constitution of the Requesting Party in a criminal prosecution. 
This contingency, found in Article 7(3), was included to ensure 
that the United States would be able to satisfy any obligations 
to disclose information under its Constitution, such as those 
set forth in Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83 (1963).
    As with other provisions of the Treaty, the confidentiality 
protections and use limitation provisions of Article 7 are for 
the benefit of the two governments that are Parties to the 
Treaty, and invocation and enforcement of these provisions is 
entirely a matter for the Parties.
    Article 8 is the first of a series of articles that spell 
out in detail the procedures to be employed in the case of 
specific types of requests for assistance outlined in Article 
1(2). Article 8 addresses the obtaining of evidence, whether it 
is a statement or testimony, documents, records, or particular 
items. A person from whom evidence is sought under the Treaty 
may appear voluntarily to provide such evidence, or, if 
necessary, the Treaty authorizes the Parties to compel 
production of evidence. This compulsion may be accomplished by 
subpoena or any other means available under the laws of the 
Requested Party.
    Article 8(3) requires the Requested Party to permit persons 
specified in the request to be present during execution of the 
request and, through a legal representative qualified to appear 
in the Requested Party's courts, to question the person giving 
testimony or evidence. In order to ensure the availability of 
this possibility, Article 8(2) calls on the Central Authority 
of the Requested Party, upon request, to notify the Requesting 
Party in advance of the date and place of the taking of 
testimony or evidence. Consistent with Article 1(4), these 
provisions do not create a right for private persons to be 
present during the execution of the request.
    Article 8(4) addresses the situation where a person from 
whom the request seeks testimony or evidence asserts a right to 
decline to provide such evidence (such as a privilege or 
immunity). If the claim is based on the laws of the Requesting 
Party, and there is no claim under the Requested Party's law, 
the evidence would nonetheless be taken and the claim made 
known to authorities of the Requesting State so that they may 
resolve it. The Treaty does not specifically address the 
resolution of privilege claims under the Requested Party's law, 
but by implication those are to be resolved by that state's 
authorities. This formulation allows each Party to resolve 
privilege claims made under its own laws.
    Article 8(5) contains the first of several provisions in 
the Treaty addressing the authentication of evidence produced 
pursuant to the Treaty. Similar provisions are found at 
Articles 9(3) and 15(3). Evidence produced under the Treaty may 
be authenticated by an attestation including, with respect to 
business records, official records, or evidence that has been 
seized pursuant to the Treaty, use of one of the forms appended 
to the Treaty. The appended forms are an integral part of the 
Treaty. The Treaty provides that evidence produced and 
authenticated according to the procedure set forth in the 
Treaty be admissible in evidence in the Requesting Party.
    Article 9 addresses provision of documents or other records 
in the possession of government agencies. The Parties are 
obligated to provide to each other copies of publicly available 
records in any form in the possession of an executive, 
legislative, or judicial authority upon request. With respect 
to documents that are not publicly available, whether to 
provide such documents is left to the discretion of the 
Requested Party. The Treaty authorizes the Requested Party to 
provide to the Requesting Party any records to the same extent, 
and under the same conditions, as they would be available to 
the Requested Party's own law enforcement or judicial 
authorities.
    Article 10 provides a mechanism for the Requesting Party to 
ask for the voluntary attendance in its territory, or in the 
territory of a third state, of a person located in the 
Requested Party for the purpose of assistance under the Treaty, 
such as to serve as a witness or expert in proceedings or to 
assist in an investigation. The Requesting Party must indicate 
the extent to which the person's expenses will be paid.
    Article 11 provides a similar mechanism for persons in 
custody. A need sometimes arises for the testimony in one 
country of a person who is incarcerated in another country. For 
example, a witness incarcerated in one country--whether the 
Requesting or Requested Party--may have to give testimony in 
the presence of an incarcerated defendant in the other country. 
Attendance of the person is still voluntary, but is also 
subject to the discretion of the Parties and agreement of the 
Central Authorities. In addition, the Treaty imposes certain 
conditions on such transfers: the person must be held in 
custody by the receiving Party, unless otherwise authorized by 
the sending Party; the receiving Party must return the person 
in custody to the sending Party as soon as circumstances permit 
or as otherwise agreed; the return of the person shall not 
require any extradition or other proceedings, such as 
immigration proceedings; the period that the person is in 
custody in the receiving Party shall be credited against the 
person's sentence in the sending Party; and, when the receiving 
state is neither of the Parties, it is the obligation of the 
Requesting Party to make all necessary arrangements to meet the 
Treaty's requirements.
    When persons agree to travel to a Requesting Party to give 
evidence, whether in custody or not, Article 10(3) authorizes 
the Central Authority of the Requesting Party, in its 
discretion, to give such persons a guarantee of ``safe 
conduct.'' This would ensure that a person appearing in the 
Requesting Party would not be subject to service of process or 
any restriction on personal liberty by reason of any acts or 
convictions that preceded that person's departure from the 
Requested Party. This provision would not prevent action 
against a person for perjury or any other crime committed while 
in the Requesting Party--rather, it applies only to past 
offenses. Under Article 10(4), any safe conduct so provided 
would cease fifteen days after the Central Authority of the 
Requested Party is notified that the person's presence is no 
longer required, or if the person has left the Requesting Party 
and voluntarily returns to it. Of course, as the Treaty sets 
forth in Article 11(4), this article does not preclude a state 
from holding a person in custody as required by Article 11(3).
    While Article 11 addresses the transfer of persons in 
custody from one Party to the other, Article 12 addresses the 
situation in which one Party may need to bring persons in 
custody through the territory of the other on the way to or 
from third states in order to participate in an investigation, 
prosecution, or proceeding. Article 12(2) provides that the 
state through which the person transits has the authority and 
obligation to keep that person in custody during the transit.
    Article 13 provides for determining the whereabouts or 
identity in the Requested Party of persons (such as witnesses, 
potential defendants, or experts) or items when such 
information is requested. The Treaty requires only that the 
Requested Party use its ``best efforts'' to ascertain the 
location or identity of the persons or items sought. The extent 
of such efforts will vary, of course, depending on the quality 
and extent of the information provided by the Requesting Party 
concerning the suspected location and last known location.
    Article 14 relates to service of documents. It creates an 
obligation on the Parties to use their best efforts, upon 
request, to serve documents relating to a request for 
assistance, such as summonses, complaints, subpoenas, or 
notices. The Parties made clear, however, in Article 14(2), 
that service of a document in a Requested Party requesting 
appearance or production of documents in a Requesting Party 
does not impose any obligation under the law of the Requested 
Party to comply. When the document pertains to an appearance in 
the Requesting Party, it must be transmitted a reasonable time 
before the scheduled appearance. The Parties chose not to set a 
fixed period of time for this obligation, as circumstances may 
vary.
    Article 15 obligates the Requested Party to execute a 
request for the search, seizure, and transfer of any item to 
the Requesting Party if the request includes the information 
justifying such action under the laws of the Requested Party. 
For requests from Bermuda to the United States, this means that 
a request would have to be supported by a showing of probable 
cause for the search. The evidentiary standard required under 
Bermuda law for requests by the United States is whether there 
are ``reasonable grounds for suspecting,'' for example, that an 
offense was committed. As noted before, either Party may refuse 
a request if it relates to conduct for which the powers of 
search and seizure are not available in the Requested Party. 
Bermuda indicated during the negotiations that tax crimes are 
one example of conduct for which search and seizure are not 
available in Bermuda.
    Article 16 addresses return of items provided pursuant to 
Treaty requests. Such items are to be returned as soon as 
practicable unless the Central Authority of the Requested Party 
waives the return. The negotiators agreed that this Article 
should be read in tandem with Article 7, which addresses 
limitations on use of information provided under the Treaty.
    Assistance in forfeiture proceedings is the subject of 
Article 17. The types of actions that could be undertaken in 
the United States under this Article include actions to seize 
and forfeit property under Title 18, Section 981 of the United 
States Code, which can be and is employed to temporarily 
restrain or to seize assets or proceeds of offenses committed 
abroad. The language of this Article, however, does not require 
either state to take any action that would exceed its domestic 
legal authority. Thus it does not mandate, for example, 
institution of forfeiture proceedings against property located 
in the United States in the absence of statutory authority to 
institute such proceedings.
    Once property is confiscated, Article 17(3) permits the 
Party in control of the property to share it with the other 
Party or otherwise dispose of it in accordance with its own 
laws and upon such terms as it deems appropriate. United States 
law permits the government to transfer a share of certain 
forfeited property to other countries that participate directly 
or indirectly in the seizure or forfeiture of the property 
where, among other requirements, such transfer is authorized by 
an international agreement. This Article provides such 
authorization for asset sharing with Bermuda.
    Article 18 is a relatively uncommon provision in U.S. 
MLATs, although it is based on similar language in MLATs with 
Canada and the United Kingdom (including the MLAT with the 
United Kingdom concerning the Cayman Islands). It provides 
that, before a Party seeks to enforce a compulsory measure 
requiring an action to be performed in the other Party (such as 
production of bank records) relating to a matter for which 
assistance under the Treaty is available, the Party must first 
attempt in good faith to obtain the desired assistance under 
the Treaty. The Requesting Party can fulfill its obligation 
under this Article by making a formal treaty request or by 
engaging in consultations for the purpose of assessing the 
availability of assistance under the Treaty. If the Requested 
Party does not or cannot commit to provide assistance in a 
timely fashion, and the delay has the potential to jeopardize 
the success of the investigation or prosecution, the Requesting 
Party would be relieved of any further obligation under this 
provision. In addition, this provision does not require use of 
the Treaty as a first resort where evidence is located in 
multiple jurisdictions, including the Requested Party, but the 
Requesting Party is seeking compulsion of evidence located 
elsewhere (for example, in its own territory).
    Article 19 states that this Treaty shall not prevent the 
Parties from providing assistance to each other through the 
provisions of other agreements, arrangements, or practices that 
may be applicable, or through the provisions of their national 
laws. Thus, for example, the Treaty would leave the provisions 
of U.S. and Bermuda law on letters rogatory completely 
undisturbed, and would not alter any practices or arrangements 
concerning investigative assistance or prohibit the Parties 
from developing other such practices or arrangements.
    Article 20 provides for consultations between the Central 
Authorities to promote the effective use of the Treaty. The 
Parties discussed the importance of regular consultations 
between Central Authorities. Such contacts generally result in 
development of practical measures to more effectively implement 
the Treaty.
    The final clauses are contained in Article 22. The Treaty 
will enter into force on the date of the latter written 
notification by the Parties that they have completed their 
internal legal requirements for entry into force. For the 
United States, this means ratification after the advice and 
consent of the Senate. The Treaty expressly applies to past 
conduct--that is, once in force, it shall apply to all requests 
presented between the Parties regardless of when the acts or 
omissions constituting the offense occurred. Article 22 also 
provides procedures for termination of the Treaty.