On 21 October, Ms Michèle Coninsx, President of Eurojust, met with 15 Congressional staff members from the US Congress at a meeting hosted at the Eurojust headquarters in The Hague. The staff, made up of advisors on defence, foreign affairs, judicial matters and communications, came from both the House and the Senate of the US Congress.
Ms Coninsx, with Mr Frédéric Baab, National Member for France, and Mr Lodewijk van Zwieten, judicial expert on cybercrime, hosted the US delegation. The staff members, including Mr David Luckey, Director of Homeland Security with the US Senate and Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Advisor with the Governmental Affairs Committee, were briefed on the role of Eurojust in EU criminal and security affairs.
During the meeting, the role of Eurojust in supporting Member States in their fight against serious cross-border organised crime was discussed, with Eurojust casework in the field of terrorism and illegal immigrant smuggling used to illustrate Eurojust’s added value and the importance of cross-border cooperation.
Especially emphasized was Eurojust’s role in fostering cooperation between the EU’s 28 Member States and important third State partners. The strategic benefits that close cooperation between EU and US judicial authorities can bring to the prosecution of international criminals were highlighted.
The need for closer cooperation on the combatting of cybercrime was also discussed, with Mr Van Zwieten elaborating on his role as a bridge-maker between Eurojust and Europol at the EC3. The importance of a joint US-EU approach as a means of tackling this emerging issue was highlighted by all participants.