On 17 November, the President of Eurojust, Ms Michèle Coninsx, and Leif Görts, National Member for Sweden and Chair of the Financial and Economic Crime Team (FECT) welcomed representatives of the Corruption Hunters’ Network (CHN) at Eurojust. The objective of the visit was for the network to obtain first-hand knowledge of how Eurojust works, with a particular focus on corruption cases.
During the visit, the role of Eurojust within the EU and beyond was underlined by Ms Coninsx, who stressed the need for strengthening the fight against transnational crime in particular corruption cases in the framework of organised crime groups. The added value of Eurojust as a partner for prosecuting authorities also outside of the EU, particularly in developing countries, was emphasised. Common elements between the Corruption Hunters Network and Eurojust were identified, such as bringing specialized prosecutors together, and ensuring a continuous exchange of know-how and experiences.
An introduction to Eurojust and an overview of its relations with third States were given by Maria Schnebli, Swiss Liaison Prosecutor to Eurojust, Lukáš Starý, National Member for the Czech Republic at Eurojust, and Vaida Linartaite-Gridziuskiene, Assistant to the Data Protection Officer.
Presentations of a corruption case in Slovenia and of the operational experience of the Italian desk in the field followed. Additionally, experiences of an Italian magistrate under the European Judicial Training Network program were given. A discussion session of questions and answers concluded the visit to Eurojust.
Brief background information on the Corruption Hunters Network (CHN)
Since 2005 the HCN has been hosted by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation, part of the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This network was initiated by the Member of the European Parliament and former investigative judge in France, Mrs Eva Joly (FR/NO) who quipped “Why should not we - who are hunting the criminals - have a network when the criminals have their networks.” Today, “hunters’’ from around 20 countries are meeting regularly to exchange experience and knowledge, and to be of support and assistance for each other in the fight against corruption. Frequently discussed issues include preventive work, investigation techniques, legal requests, how to prevent money laundering, protection of whistleblowers, illicit capital flows and asset recovery. The network members are mainly from police, prosecution or are heads of anti-corruption agencies from all over the world. Currently, the members come from Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, Spain, Switzerland, Norway, Tanzania, Nigeria, Malawi, Zambia, South Africa, Liberia, Senegal, USA, Brazil, Costa Rica, São Tome e Principe, the Anti-Corruption and Integrity in Arab Countries project of UNDP, and the UN Organization for Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
Corruption Hunters Network
European Judicial Training Network