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UPDATE: Eurojust will be requested to coordinate internet telephony investigations

​NOTE: This is an update of the press release issued on Friday 20 February 2009. Some of the information in this press release was issued prematurely and is therefore incorrect, as there is not yet an official case reported to Eurojust.

The Hague, 25 February 2009

At the request of Direzione Nazionale Antimafia in Rome, Ms Carmen Manfredda, acting National Member for Italy at Eurojust, was approached by the Italian judicial authorities with the request to introduce a case to Eurojust.

When requested, Eurojust could play an important role in overcoming the technical and legal obstacles to the interception of internet telephony systems, taking into account the various data protection rules and civil rights.

In September 2006, a first strategic meeting on internet telephony took place at Eurojust, in the context of another case introduced by Italy. The participants were informed of the technical and legal issues of the subject. Representatives from the company Skype S.A. were invited and present at this meeting. There was a positive message from the Skype representatives during the meeting, showing their commitment to cooperate with the law enforcement authorities in the fight against serious, cross-border organised crime. The participants took into consideration that new VoIP technologies could offer a possible communication channel to criminals and criminal networks.

Following a meeting with the judicial authorities in Milan, Italy, Ms Manfredda commented: “The possibility of intercepting internet telephony will be an essential tool in the fight against international organised crime within Europe and beyond. Our aim is not to stop users from taking advantage of internet telephony, but to prevent criminals from using VoIP systems to plan and organise their unlawful actions.”

For more information, please contact:

Mr Joannes THUY, Press Officer & Spokesperson
EUROJUST, Maanweg 174, 2516 AB, The Hague, The Netherlands
Tel +31 70 412 5508 - Fax +31 70 412 5005
E-mail: jthuy[AT]eurojust.europa.eu