Europol "threat assessment" paves the way for increased operational police cooperation
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EU policing agency Europol has published its latest 'Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment' which focuses on "crime in the age of technology" and argues that there are more than 5,000 organised crime groups currently under investigation in the EU, whose activities are "increasing in complexity and scale" and for whom "technology is a key component of most, if not all, criminal activities".
The report establishes ten "priority crime" areas for EU agencies, institutions and national authorities to focus on: currency counterfeiting, cybercrime, drug trafficking, environmental crime, fraud, intellectual property crime, organised property crime, migrant smuggling, trafficking of firearms and trafficking in human beings. These are complemented by the "cross-cutting threats" of corruption, countermeasures against law enforcement, criminal finances including money laundering, document fraud, extortion, and the online trade in illicit goods.
These will serve as the basis for enhanced operational police cooperation in the years to come, with the Council of the EU's Standing Committee on Operational Cooperation on Internal Security (COSI) currently in the process of drawing up a set of conclusions that will set out the framework for cooperation between 2018 and 2021.
Statewatch is also publishing here a note from Europol discussing the "major strategic changes identified by the Presidency" for the forthcoming 2018-21 policy cycle.
- Europol: Serious Organised Crime Threat Assessment (SOCTA) 2017 (link to pdf, 23MB)
- Europol press release: Crime in the age of technology Europols Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment 2017 (pdf)
- Draft Council Conclusions on the continuation of the EU Policy Cycle for organised and serious international crime for the period 2018-2021 (6372/17, LIMITE, 17 February 2017, pdf)
- Note from Europol: Major strategic changes identified for the next EU Policy Cycle for organised and serious international crime 2017-2021: contribution Europol (pdf)
Background and further information
- EU joint police operations target irregular migrants, Statewatch Journal, vol 23 no 3/4, February 2014
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