27th SEEPAG Confence on Joint Investigation Teams

The 27th  SEEPAG Conference on “Joint investigation teams” held in Podgorica, during 20-21 September, under the 2016 Chairmanship of Montenegro, was jointly organized by the Supreme State Prosecutor’s Office of Montenegro, the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and the Southeast European Law Enforcement Center (SELEC).

Mr. Ivica Stankovic, the Supreme State Prosecutor of Montenegro, Mrs. Sonja Boskovic, SEEPAG Chairperson, Mrs. Ivana Goranic, RCC Expert on Justice and Home Affairs and Mrs. Snejana Maleeva, SELEC Director for Legal and Internal Affairs, opened the meeting and addressed the participants.

The event gathered prosecutors from all twelve SEEPAG Member States, representatives of the prosecution offices of Republic of Austria, Kingdom of Belgium, Czech Republic and Kingdom of Spain, as well as long term SELEC partners, such as European Judicial Network and Regional Cooperation Council.

The meeting was focused on exploring the legal possibilities of setting up joint investigation teams, including  between EU and non-EU states and also sharing the experiences in concluding trans-border organized crime cases by making use of such useful instrument. A joint investigation team is an international cooperation tool consisting of a team of judicial and law enforcement authorities of several states, established for a limited duration and a specific purpose by way of a written agreement, in order to carry out criminal investigations in one or more of the involved states.

Mrs. Snejana Maleeva, Director for Legal and Internal Affairs of SELEC, presented the joint investigations coordinated by SELEC in 2015 and underlined the possibilities through which SELEC supports the joint investigations conducted by its Member States’ law enforcement authorities. Mrs. Maleeva also informed the SEEPAG members about the latest developments in SELEC.

The current activities of RCC were presented by Mrs. Ivana Goranic, Expert on Justice and Home Affairs at RCC, who mentioned also about the SEE Judicial Training Institution Network, established in order to serve as a platform for the seminars and trainings of prosecutors and police officers, aiming to further enhance their cooperation. Having regard the importance of the matter and considering the terrorist events that took place recently in Europe, it was decided that the next meeting’s topic to be related to the way of collecting evidences in terrorism offence investigations.