Prosecution services and cross-border cooperation

Cooperation between source and destination countries of THB for labour exploitation is essential because of the cross-border nature of THB for labour exploitation. By working together, source and destination countries will be able to tackle the whole trafficking network, instead of just part of it in one country.

To strengthen cross-border cooperation, prosecution services could:

Import Article 13 notification forms into the Eurojust Case Management System (CMS)

Article 13 of the Eurojust Decision (Council Decision 2009/426/JHA) lists specific circumstances in which the member states are obligated to report a minimum level of information to Eurojust in a structured manner. By importing Article 13 notification forms about THB for labour exploitation into the Eurojust Case Management System (CMS), prosecutors can check for the existence of links with the information already stored in the CMS.

Agree which member state will prosecute

When prosecutors cooperate on a case of THB for labour exploitation, they could decide early on which country will prosecute the case so they can work efficiently and avoid that effort is duplicated.

For example, in a case involving Bulgaria and the Netherlands, both countries had difficulties proving the offence of money laundering linked to trafficking in human beings.

‘It was initially agreed at Eurojust that one country would investigate the offence of THB and the other country the offence of money laundering linked to the THB. However, during a coordination meeting at Eurojust, it came to light that difficulties had been encountered in relation to securing convictions for money laundering in the absence of evidence of the underlying predicate offence. A solution was found, where the authorities agreed to transfer the criminal proceedings from the country that initially investigated the money laundering offences to the other country that had in place legal mechanisms that allowed the prosecution of money laundering without the need to prove the predicate offence.’

(Text taken from Eurojust, Implementation of the Eurojust Action Plan against THB 2012-2016 - Mid-term report, The Hague 2014, p. 14.)

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More general information on cross-border cooperation.