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Information exchange and cooperation regarding terrorist offences
By means of this decision, the European Union (EU) reinforces police and judicial cooperation to prevent and combat terrorism more effectively. In particular, it aims to improve the exchanges of all relevant information between the operational services responsible for combating terrorism.
Council Decision 2005/671/JHA of 20 September 2005 on the exchange of information and cooperation concerning terrorist offences.
In the aftermath of the terrorist attacks in the United States in 2001, European Union (EU) countries repeatedly reaffirmed their desire to combat all forms of terrorism. For instance, they undertook to reinforce cooperation between the organisations responsible for combating terrorism, such as Europol, Eurojust and the national police services.
On 19 December 2002, the Council adopted Decision 2003/48/JHA on the implementation of specific measures for police and judicial cooperation to combat terrorism in accordance with Article 4 of Common Position 2001/931/CFSP. Faced with the need to widen the scope of information exchanges, the Council adopted this decision to extend information exchanges to all stages of criminal proceedings, including convictions, and to all persons, groups or entities investigated, prosecuted or convicted for terrorist offences (as defined in Decision 2002/475/JHA).
The decision requires each EU country to designate:
- a specialised service within its police services or other law enforcement authorities, which will have access to information concerning criminal investigations on terrorist offences conducted by its law enforcement authorities;
- one or more authorities as the Eurojust national correspondent for terrorism matters or an appropriate judicial or other competent authority that will have access to information concerning prosecutions and convictions for terrorist offences.
Any such information (e.g. suspects’ personal data, the activity under investigation, the type of offence) that may affect two or more EU countries must also be transmitted to Europol and Eurojust.
Subject to certain conditions, the competent authorities of each EU country will have access to any documents, files and evidence collected by another EU country.
EU countries must take the necessary measures to ensure that all requests for mutual legal assistance, recognition and enforcement of judgments in connection with terrorist offences are dealt with as a matter of urgency and are given priority.
The possibility of setting up joint investigation teams is also provided for.
This decision repeals Decision 2003/48/JHA.
|Act||Entry into force||Deadline for transposition in the Member States||Official Journal|
OJ L 253 of 29.9.2005
- European Commission Directorate-General for Freedom, Security and Justice website on the fight against terrorism