Definition of Special Branch noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


Special Branch

BrE BrE//ˈspeʃl brɑːntʃ//
; NAmE NAmE//ˈspeʃl bræntʃ//
[uncountable + singular or plural verb] (also the Special Branch [singular + singular or plural verb]) The police
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the department of the British police force that deals with the defence of the country against political crimes and terrorism See related entries: The police Culture The Special Branch used to be responsible for fighting terrorist (= violent political criminal) groups such as the IRA, but MI5 took over this work in 1992. The Special Branch is now mostly involved in protecting government ministers and foreign politicians in Britain, and investigating people who break the Official Secrets Act.