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Operational and strategic activities

Terrorism Convictions Monitor

The Terrorism Convictions Monitor (TCM) is a Eurojust report that provides a regular overview of terrorism-related developments across the European Union. It is produced three times a year and focuses on concluded court proceedings, amendments to relevant legislation at European and national levels and a selection of upcoming and ongoing trials. It also includes a detailed legal analysis of a selected judgement from a Member State.

The TCM was launched at the beginning of 2008 as a report intended for practitioners to encourage and facilitate the sharing with Eurojust, and through Eurojust with other practitioners, of information on convictions and acquittals for terrorist offences across the European Union in conformity with Council Decision 2005/671/JHA on the exchange of information and cooperation concerning terrorist offences. The first issues of the report were entirely based on open source information available from media outlets in the Member States.

To further promote the sharing of information and best practice gained in concluded terrorism cases, Eurojust enhanced the TCM’s analytical component by introducing a legal analysis chapter focusing on selected judgements from the Member States. The analysis was intended to help practitioners by providing an insight into court decisions from various jurisdictions and offering relevant case studies and comparative analyses. The analysis has been conducted following a tailor-made methodology to ensure a unified approach. Special focus has been placed on several lines of comparison, particularly in cases of comparable criminal facts tried in different jurisdictions, allowing for the identification of similarities and differences in the Member States and sharing of lessons learned. Since 2013, when the first relevant judgement was issued in the Netherlands, the analysis of judgements has been primarily focused on the criminal justice response to foreign terrorist fighters.

The evolution of the concept and contents of the TCM and its increased added value to practitioners across the European Union prompted national authorities to seek the inclusion in the TCM of information on prosecutions, convictions and acquittals they share with Eurojust. This information reinforces Eurojust’s capacity to support national authorities in a solid, efficient and expeditious manner. It allows Eurojust to identify links between ongoing investigations, or links with other countries, or may serve as a basis for national authorities to launch investigations. The information on convictions shared with Eurojust provides a comprehensive overview of relevant court decisions in the Member States and the various approaches to address, at judicial level, the evolving terrorist threat. Eurojust’s analysis of this information helps identify common challenges and promote best practice. It allows practitioners to gain insight into specific legal, evidentiary and procedural issues faced by the judiciary and draw lessons learned from other jurisdictions to build solid prosecution cases at home.

At present, the TCM remains a combination of information officially provided to Eurojust by virtue of Council Decision 2005/671/JHA and information available in open sources, with an increasing number of judgements reported to Eurojust as they become available in the Member States, thus allowing for their summary in the upcoming issue of the report.

Most of the TCMs issued since 2008 can be found in the Document library.