22nd Apr 2019

More power to Europol

Giving more power to Europol, the European Union’s police cooperation organisation, is set to be one of the main topics on the agenda when Denmark takes over the presidency of the European Union next month. The aim is to provide Europol with greater operational freedom, as well as making it easier to confiscate the assets of criminals, reports the Danish newspaper Berlingske Tidende.

The plans are part of a twelve point plan for changes within the area of Justice and Home Affairs to be put to the other 14 European Union member states by the Danish Justice and Home Affairs Minister, Lene Expersen, when Denmark takes over the presidency of the European Union in two weeks time.

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The plans for Europol furthermore include a much wider portfolio, closer links with the general public and the creation of a brand new organ responsible for developing terror profiling aimed at mapping out the movement and financial characteristics of terror organisations.

Aims to give Europol a more flexible remit

The changes to the Europol-convention is set to be one of the flagship policies of the Danish Justice and Home Affairs minister during the Danish presidency, who also takes over a number of other unresolved issues from previous presidencies, such as the implementation of an extradition treaty with the United States in light of the international war on terrorism.

Today the work of Europol is narrowly defined: it works only with registration, analysis and co-ordination and not actual investigation, however, the Danish government's proposal aims to give Europol a more flexible remit so that it can participate better in the fight against cross border crime.

Denmark, in a drive to ensure flexibility, aims to end the system of special Europol contact persons in each member state to allow individual police forces and stations across Europe to take contact with Europol on their own initiative.

Prison suicide rates in France highest in Europe

Suicide rates per 10,000 inmates in 2017 in France stood at 12.6, higher than any other European country. The latest figures are part of a much bigger report out Tuesday by the Strasbourg-based human rights watchdog, the Council of Europe.

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