The Organized Crime Convention also obliges States parties to provide mutual legal assistance to the extent possible. Mutual legal assistance in criminal matters is a process by which States solicit and assist other States in serving judicial documents and gathering evidence in criminal cases. The reference work prepared in accordance with resolution 9/3 of the Conference of the Parties to the Turkish Communities constitutes the first and most comprehensive study of the practical application of the provisions of the Convention on International Cooperation, as documented in specific cases. The aim of the reference book is to provide as complete a picture as possible of the practical application of the Organized Crime Convention as a legal basis for international cooperation at an important juncture: after the 20th anniversary of the Convention. The Convention celebrated the anniversary of its adoption and openness and the experience gained 18 years after its entry into force. In doing so, the Compendium fills a gap in the range of technical assistance instruments developed by UNODC to assist States parties in preventing and combating organized crime more effectively and in accordance with the requirements of the CTO Convention. The baseline work also facilitates the exchange of relevant experiences among States parties and, on the basis of lessons learned, the development of recommendations to improve and strengthen the use of the Convention as an instrument of international cooperation to combat transnational organized crime more effectively. The harmonization of the legal framework at the national and international levels is crucial. Similar procedures and legislation facilitate and accelerate cooperation.
Multilateral and regional treaties serve this purpose. In the Organized Crime Convention, article 18 is devoted to mutual legal assistance and the text consists of 30 paragraphs, the longest article in the entire Convention. This level of attention shows the importance of harmonizing legal procedures. The overall objective of the handbook, which is designed as a “practical guide to law enforcement and prosecution in the area of smuggling of migrants”, is to strengthen the capacity of criminal justice practitioners to dismantle criminal networks involved in the smuggling of migrants, to convict the criminals involved and to sensitize criminal justice practitioners to the criminal nature of migrant smuggling. and improved cooperation between countries of origin, transit and destination. The training modules are designed to be used in the context of providing technical assistance through the training of law enforcement agencies and prosecutors in the effective investigation and prosecution of migrant smuggling cases. The modules are written in such a way that they can be easily adapted to the needs of different regions and countries and can serve as a basis for upgrading or supplementing the training programmes of national training institutes. This section contains standardized templates, checklists and model provisions on mutual legal assistance in electronic evidence.
These model resources have been developed taking into account best practices and the need to promote harmonized practices in mutual legal assistance. In view of the wide and growing range of international instruments that each State party needs to afford one another the widest possible mutual legal assistance and to designate a central authority for this purpose, it is also important that States ensure that their central authorities constitute a single entity in order to facilitate greater consistency in mutual legal assistance with regard to different types of offences and to reduce the possibility of mutual legal assistance. fragmentation of mutual legal assistance efforts and reduce the possibility of fragmentation of mutual legal assistance efforts. This is the first time we have had a debate on this subject. The Compendium of International Cooperation in Criminal Matters Related to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime as a legal basis was prepared by the Conference Support Division, the Organized Crime and Trafficking in Persons Division and the Contracts Division of UNODC, with the financial support of the Government of the People`s Republic of China. As provided for in the Organized Crime Convention, mutual legal assistance may be requested for: Organized Crime and Trafficking in Persons Division Contracts Division United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime UNODC legal mailbox: firstname.lastname@example.org (i) Any other type of assistance that is not contrary to the domestic law of the requested State Party. The programme is a platform for the transfer of knowledge and expertise needed to strengthen the capacity of national criminal justice officials to implement the universal legal framework against terrorism. Module 3 of the programme focuses on international cooperation in criminal matters, in particular mutual legal assistance and extradition in terrorism cases. The aim of this handbook is to enable legal practitioners specialising in the fight against terrorism to act more effectively and quickly. In this way, the manual gives practitioners immediate answers on the tools they can use and the types of relevant international cooperation, such as extradition and mutual legal assistance, as well as practical advice on the difficulties and obstacles they may encounter. It is also intended to be an educational tool for the training of legal practitioners in the fight against terrorism.
The handbook is available in response to Conference of the Parties resolution 5/8, entitled “Implementation of the provisions of the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime related to international cooperation”. That resolution mandated UNODC to prepare a practical guide to facilitate the drafting, transmission and execution of requests for extradition and mutual legal assistance. The manual is intended for central and other competent national authorities, policy makers and criminal justice practitioners, including lawyers, investigators, judges and judges who provide international mutual legal assistance. The Organized Crime Convention also obliges States parties to “provide mutually similar assistance” if the requesting State has “reasonable grounds to suspect” that one or more of these offences are cross-border in nature. This cross-border character includes cases where victims, witnesses, proceeds, instrumentalities or evidence of such offences are present in the requested State and where the offences concern an organised criminal group. The Honiara Declaration “calls for a series of procedural and substantive measures to promote law enforcement cooperation, mutual legal assistance in criminal matters, control of money laundering, confiscation of assets and banking regulation, extradition, the fight against drug-related offences, the fight against environmental crimes, the fight against terrorism, maritime surveillance, cooperation in tax matters and assistance in criminal matters. Ensure prison administration and the treatment of indigenous problems. Other areas identified by the Forum after Honiara include human trafficking, regional security, proliferation of small arms, identity fraud and corruption.[Boister, Neil (2004). Transnational crime in the Pacific. University of the South Pacific (USP).] Mutual legal assistance agreements increasingly require States parties to designate a central authority (usually the Ministry of Justice) to which requests can be addressed, thus providing an alternative to diplomatic channels. The judicial authorities of the requesting State may then communicate directly with the central authority. Today, even more direct channels are increasingly used, as an official of the requesting State may address the request directly to the competent official of the other State. This trend shows the importance of a national central authority as a prerequisite for more effective mutual legal assistance. The Organized Crime Convention makes its designation a mandatory condition for the prompt and orderly execution or transmission of requests, without, however, prejudice to the right of States parties to use traditional diplomatic channels (art. 18, para.
The offences for which assistance should be provided include cross-border “serious crime” involving an organised criminal organisation, offences defined in the Organised Crime Convention itself (participation in an organised criminal organisation, money laundering, corruption and obstruction of justice) and offences referred to in the protocols to that Convention to which States are parties. In order to increase the knowledge and capacity-building of practitioners, UNODC has developed a wide range of publications and legal and technical tools on various areas of international cooperation. Compendium of International Cooperation in Criminal Matters Cases relating to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime as a Legal Basis (2021). 1. States Parties shall afford one another the widest measure of mutual assistance in investigations, prosecutions and judicial proceedings relating to the offences set forth in article 3 of this Convention and shall afford one another similar assistance if the requesting State Party has reasonable grounds to believe that the offence set forth in article 3 (a) or (b), paragraph 1 (a) or (b), is of a transboundary nature: including whether the victims, witnesses, proceeds, instrumentalities or evidence of such offences are located in the requested State Party and that the offence involves an organized criminal organization.