EXTRACTED TEXT FROM:
COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION
8 February 2000
NOTE from General Secretariat to Europol Working Party
No. prev. doc.: 13370/99 EUROPOL 48
Subject : Comments by delegations to the “First reflections concerning the Tampere Conclusions as far as they relate to Europol” as contained in doc. 13370/99 EUROPOL 48ANNEX X
RESPONSE BY THE GREEK DELEGATION
It should be noted that our answers to the above reference are the first remarks and not the final position of our country.
Answering to the posed questions, we let you know the following:
1. Joint Investigating Teams
The European Council calls for immediate setting up of joint investigating teams as foreseen in the Treaty with participation of representatives of Europol in a support capacity.
a. The setting up of joint teams should take place in particular serious cases after a request of one or more Member States and if two Member States, at least, are involved in the case.
A representative of EUROPOL will participate in these teams in a support capacity.
EUROPOL must provide, in any such case, all available necessary means for the successful outcome of the case.
b. As legal basis, for the operational activities of the joint teams, the adopted legal instrument, depending on the case, from those foreseen in the Article 34 of the E.U.C. (e.g. by issuing of the Council’s Decisions, e.t.c.). The different criminal procedural rules will still apply, when the national law is called for realization of these actions.
In this case, of course, autonomy and peculiarity of the national preliminary examining systems still apply.
c. The use of information gathered by the joint teams will be secured through the national provisions concerning confidentiality of information and protection of personal data. However, this securing is uncertain in the case of applying of the national law, when it concerns participant officers from third States.
d. The members of the joint teams act within the frameworks of their obligations arising from the respective national provisions and the provisions of the EUROPOL’s Convention.
The European Council calls for the establishment of a European Police Chiefs Operational Task Force to exchange, in co-operation with Europol, experiences and to promote operational and practical co-operation in the fight against the cross-border crime.
As regards this matter, we think it advisable to wait for the conclusions arising from the meeting of the Police Chiefs, which will be held in Lisbon, concerning this matter.
The European Council calls for the Council to provide EUROPOL with:
a. The necessary resources and support,
b. Strengthening the EUROPOL’s role by means of receiving operational data from the Member States,
c. Authorizing EUROPOL to ask Member States to initiate or co-ordinate investigations.
– We agree that EUROPOL should be provided for by the necessary resources in the context of EUROPOL’s budget, always in connection with the assigned duties. Also, we support the co-operation frameworks created by the EUROPOL’s Convention for its better performance by the Member States.
– As regards strengthening of EUROPOL through reception of operational data, under the present conditions transmission of information can be done for analytical reasons, through the National Units, not for their own use but for supporting reasons.
Therefore, it should be further clarified for what purpose, where and why EUROPOL needs operational data.
For any act, above and beyond these three presuppositions, amendment of the EUROPOL’s Convention and other EUROPOL’s Regulations will be requested (Regulations concerning work of Analysis, privileges and immunities, etc.).
– As regards opening of investigations under the Article 2 (4) of the EUROPOL’s Convention, EUROPOL can be addressed to all competent authorities of the Member States for prevention and suppression of the crime.
Under the Article 4 (2) of the Convention, EUROPOL address requests through the National Units. We should examine the new capacity of the Article 30, par. 2 (b) of the EUROPOL Implementation Convention through which EUROPOL requests from the Member States to initiate or co-ordinate an investigation.
The point is in what extent this request should be realized and in what extent there is an obligation to inform EUROPOL on the result.
In this last case, perhaps it is necessary to amend the Convention in order to include the proper realization by the Member States.
To reinforce the fight against serious crime, the European Council has agreed that a Unit (EUROJUST) should be set up composed of national prosecutors, magistrates or police officers of equivalent competence, detached from each Member State according to its legal system.
The relationships between this Unit and EUROPOL should be examined and any official positions will request amendment of the Convention.
The European Council is determined to ensure that concrete steps are taken to trace, freeze, seize and confiscate the proceeds of crime.
The question concerns the matter if EUROPOL should play a role regarding transmission and analysis of operational data relating to trace, freezing, seizure and confiscation of crime’s proceeds.
The European Council invites the Council to extend the competence of EUROPOL to Money laundering in general, regardless of the time of offence from which the laundered proceeds originate.
In the present stage, EUROPOL is responsible for the money laundering if it is related to any of its competences. As regards a general competence on money laundering, amendment of the Convention is requested.
Source of this document: SEMDOC database
Statewatch European Monitoring and Documentation Centre