I would like to help today and donate

Next
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Next
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
CLOSE
NEWS

Short Update: Council of European Union publishes information on impact of COVID-19 on cooperation in criminal matters

FairTrialsAdmin - May 18, 2020 - COVID-19 Updates, Cross-border justice, Extended pre-trial detention

The Council of the European Union has published an executive summary of information collected through Eurojust, European Judicial Network and Member State surveys on the impact of COVID-19 measures on cooperation in criminal matters.   

In relation to the issuing of EAWs, the information indicated that the vast majority of EU judicial authorities continue to issue EAWs normally. Some states are prioritising the issuing of EAWs, either following the adoption of specific guidelines issued by the public prosecutors’ offices, where public prosecutors are the issuing authorities or nevertheless trigger the issuing procedure (e.g. limiting the issuing of EAWs only to urgent or very serious cases), or as an indirect result of the general limitations on judicial activities during the pandemic. Border closures have also affected the last phase of surrender procedure making it impossible to carry out the actual surrender in some cases, notably where air travel is required. 

If surrender is temporarily postponed, authorities are called to review the prolongation of the requested person’s arrest. Several States have reported cases where it was decided that prolonging detention would conflict with the principle of proportionality and the executing judicial authorities have accordingly released the requested person and adopted alternative measures to prevent the person from absconding. 

The issuing of European Investigation Orders (EIOs) or requests for mutual legal assistance (MLA) have been reported to continue as usual.  However, some states indicate that issuing of these instruments has decreased while in others EIOs are being issued and translated, but their transmission to the executing State is affected, suspended or postponed, except when it is urgent. In most States, the execution of EIOs and MLA requests has been restricted to urgent cases and/or postponed. Most States have suspended the transfer of sentenced persons. 

Individual Member State responses are accessible here

We publish information as it is reported to us. If you would like to make us aware of an inaccuracy or send us more information please email us at [email protected] 

If you are a journalist interested in this story, please telephone Fair Trials’ press department on +44 (0) 20 7822 2370 or +32 (0) 2 360 04 71.

Keep up to date

Receive updates on our work and news about Fair Trials globally

Activities in the following sections on this website are supported by the Justice Programme of the European Union: Legal Experts Advisory Panel, Defence Rights Map, Case Law Database, Advice Guides and Latest News. More information about our financial supporters is available here.