Blocking terrorists’ access to financing will be easier with new EU legislation adopted today by the European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs. Tackling cross-border terrorism requires more efficient EU-wide cooperation. Rules adopted today will simplify the cross-border enforcement of freezing and confiscation orders by creating a single legal instrument directly applicable in all Member States.
Salvo Pogliese MEP, the EPP Group’s Spokesman on the new EU legislation, said: “With improved rules on the freezing and confiscation of criminals’ capital, we are continuing the fight against terrorism and organised crime. A single legal instrument for the freezing or confiscation of assets generated by criminal activities in all Member States will prevent terrorists and criminals from using their capital to commit further attacks. Criminals will not be able to hide their illegally-gained finances around the EU. Member States will automatically recognise all decisions to freeze or confiscate these incomes issued in the EU.”
According to the new draft legislation, confiscated assets will be used for law enforcement activities, crime prevention and the compensation of victims. “Confiscated assets will be re-used in areas affected by terrorist attacks or other serious crime. The EPP Group made sure that each Member State will have to allocate part of the assets for the compensation of families of police officers and civil servants who lose their lives while carrying out their duties as well as police and public officials who are permanently disabled in the performance of their duties”, added Pogliese.
The introduction of a new form of the legislation, which should now be a Regulation instead of a Directive and Council decisions, thereby avoiding current problems with the transposition in the Member States, is not the only proposed improvement. The proposal also sets out common rules for the confiscation of assets that have been transferred by an investigated or convicted person to third parties and for the confiscation in cases where the perpetrator of an offence cannot be identified. Finally, it extends the scope of cooperation and introduces simpler certificates and faster procedures for mutual recognition of confiscation orders.