Eurojust and the EU Institutions
Eurojust maintains close relationships with the principal EU Institutions, notably the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council of the EU.
Regular meetings with representatives of the Trio Presidencies, the European Commission, the General Secretariat of the Council and the European Parliament are held at Eurojust or in Brussels. Representatives of the EU Institutions are also regularly invited to strategic and tactical meetings and seminars organised by Eurojust.
Eurojust participates in the work of the relevant Council preparatory bodies such as the Working Party on Cooperation in Criminal Matters (COPEN), the Working Party on General Matters and Evaluation (GENVAL), CATS (former Article 36 Committee) and the Standing Committee on Operational Cooperation on Internal Security (COSI), providing its practitioner input during the decision-making process of the European Union.
Eurojust and Europol
As Eurojust and Europol have been created to support the Member States in their fight against organised serious cross-border crime, a close cooperation between the two institutions is essential to fulfil their competences and tasks.
A new Cooperation Agreement, which entered into force on 1 January 2010, intends to further increase these efforts to foster closer cooperation between Eurojust and Europol in the fight against serious cross-border crime, in particular by increasing information exchange and improving their strategic and operational cooperation. This overall aim should be achieved, inter alia, by promoting the association of Eurojust with Europol AWFs as well as the further participation by Europol in Eurojust’s strategic and coordination meetings. The agreement also provides for additional cooperative activities, including the possibility of temporarily posting representatives of one or both agencies in the other’s premises, as well as the obligation to inform each other about participation in Joint Investigation Teams.
Eurojust and OLAF
In accordance with Article 26 of the Eurojust Decision, Eurojust has established and maintains cooperative relations with the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF). OLAF and Eurojust have a different nature of tasks, but a close cooperation between the two bodies is essential as the two organisations are complementary and share the same aim: to protect the financial interests of the European Union.
Eurojust plays an important role in coordinating investigations and prosecution procedures regarding the protection of the financial interests of the European Union. OLAF carries out administrative investigations of crimes affecting the financial interests of the EU and transmits relevant information to Eurojust whenever it appears that a case directly involves judicial cooperation between the competent national authorities of two or more Member States, or where the case concerns a Member State and the EU.
On 24 September 2008, Eurojust and OLAF signed a Practical Agreement on Arrangements of Cooperation with the aims of enhancing the fight against fraud, corruption or any other criminal offence or illegal activity affecting the European Union’s financial interests, defining the modalities for a close cooperation between both parties and avoiding duplication of efforts.
The Agreement regulates the ways of cooperation between the parties, including operational and strategic cooperation, collaboration in Joint Investigations Teams and involvement in relevant professional training, seminars and workshops.
Based on the provisions of this Agreement, quarterly meetings are organised between dedicated teams of Eurojust and OLAF, and a regular exchange of case referrals, case summaries and case-related information, as well as a follow up on the progress made and the activities performed in the exchanged cases takes place. At the same time, study visits in the framework of the Eurojust-OLAF Exchange Programme are regularly organised and the President of Eurojust meets bi-annually with the Director General of OLAF to evaluate and reinforce collaboration.
Eurojust and OLAF are working together towards an increased exchange of information on complex cases to address the need for coordination of investigations and prosecutions and the concerns that investigations are sometimes not followed up by prosecutions in Member States. The recently established common system of secure communication has the purpose to facilitate the flow of information between the parties.
Eurojust and EJTN
The basis for cooperation between Eurojust and the European Judicial Training Network (EJTN) in the field of judicial training is set out in the Memorandum of Understanding signed on 7 February 2008.
Article 2 of the Memorandum of Understanding foresees the possibility of seconding to Eurojust practising judges and prosecutors from Member States as part of an exchange programme aimed at making them more familiar with Eurojust’s tasks, functioning and activities. Within the exchange programme, the seconded judges and prosecutors shall be assigned to the National Desk of their Member State of origin to be actively involved in the daily work of their Desk. They shall also be involved in other Eurojust activities, including College plenary meetings, strategic meetings, coordination meetings and team meetings. Eurojust and EJTN may also consider engaging in other forms of cooperation activities in the field of judicial training, including participation in meetings, conferences, seminars and other training activities organised either by Eurojust or by EJTN.
Eurojust and CEPOL
CEPOL is an important cooperating partner in the JHA area. On 1 January 2010, the Memorandum of Understanding between Eurojust and CEPOL entered into force with the aim of defining, encouraging and improving training for police and prosecutors in the fight against serious crime, particularly when it is organised crime.
Within the limits of its legal framework, Eurojust shall inform CEPOL about its priorities and activities to enable CEPOL to plan its training activities accordingly. Pursuant to Article 4 of the Memorandum of Understanding, Eurojust and CEPOL shall support each other in the development of course material and of common curricula for training activities in fields of relevance to both organisations. Eurojust has already implemented good operational cooperation with CEPOL in the training area. Eurojust representatives regularly deliver training at CEPOL courses, seminars and conferences and CEPOL officials are invited as delegates at Eurojust meetings and seminars.
Eurojust and FRONTEX
In 2010, Frontex and Eurojust intensified contacts to establish and maintain cooperative relations, as foreseen in Article 26(1) of the revised Eurojust Decision. Throughout 2011, the two organisations worked closely together to prepare a draft cooperation instrument to encourage and promote inter-agency cooperation and support the fight against cross-border crime. In December 2013, Eurojust and Frontex signed a Memorandum of Understanding.
Eurojust and the EMCDDA
The Memorandum of Understanding
with the EMCDDA signed on 15 July 2014 focuses on drug-related matters relevant to judicial cooperation — including drug supply, drug supply reduction and legislation — and will be implemented through joint activities, decided on the basis of the partners’ respective work programmes. The MoU also reflects the focus of the 2014–2017 EU Policy Cycle for organised and serious international crime, under which the Council of the EU prioritises specific objectives to address the trafficking of synthetic drugs, cocaine and heroin.