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Valbuena González_new (1).jpg Prof. Dr. Félix Valbuena González

Harmonization of Procedural Safeguards of Suspected and Accused Persons
State of the Matter in Spain

3 July 2020 (updated 1 month, 1 week ago) // english

After giving a brief overview of the major developments in the harmonization of procedural safeguards for suspected and accused persons in the European Union, this article focuses on the legal reforms that were necessary to implement four of the six adopted EU Directives on procedural safeguards into Spanish national law. This concerns the transposition of the Directives on interpretation/translation, on information, on access to a lawyer and communication with third parties, and finally on legal aid. The main aspects of the transpositions into the Spanish legal order are explained and deviations from the requirements of the Directives pointed out. Pending developmental issues, the article enables the reader to reflect the true status of the suspect and accused person in Spain after the reforms that were triggered by the EU acts.

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Schroeder_Werner_sw.jpg Prof. Dr. Werner Schroeder LL.M. (Berkeley)

Limits to European Harmonisation of Criminal Law

1 April 2020 // english

The harmonisation of criminal law and criminal procedure in the EU is subject to specific conditions, which differ from those generally applicable to the approximation of laws in the Union. Specific limits may result from the rules of competence set out in Art. 82 et seq. TFEU, from EU fundamental rights, or from constitutional conditions applicable in certain Member States. These factors can impede the negative approximation of national criminal law systems through mutual recognition as well as the positive approximation through EU secondary law. Furthermore, if serious doubts arise as to whether the rule of law is fully respected by Member States participating in the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice, the premise for any form of judicial cooperation in criminal matters in the EU is no longer valid.

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Dr. h.c. Hans G. Nilsson

Some Memories of the Third Pillar

18 February 2020 (updated 5 months, 2 weeks ago) // english

The author gives a personal overview of how the European Union became involved in criminal law over the last 20 years. He calls to mind the main stages of the development, from the Maastricht and Amsterdam Treaties to the draft European constitution and the Lisbon Treaty. The article also outlines the challenges that have emerged and compares the Council of Europe and the EU in their ability to shape European criminal law.

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Salazar70bearb_grau.jpg Lorenzo Salazar

Twenty Years since Tampere
The Development of Mutual Recognition in Criminal Matters

18 February 2020 (updated 5 months, 2 weeks ago) // english

Twenty years having passed since the Conclusions of the European Council in Tampere, which proposed the principle of mutual recognition as the “cornerstone” of judicial cooperation within the Union, the author takes the opportunity to reflect on the main achievements in this sector before and after the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon. From the enthusiasm following the adoption of the European Arrest Warrant to the recently achieved European Investigation Order and the Regulation on freezing and confiscation orders, the panorama of mutual recognition still seems to be characterized by excessive fragmentation. After Tampere and following the adoption of the consecutive programmes of action of 2004 (The Hague) and 2009 (Stockholm), no really new strategic guidelines have been adopted by the heads of state and governments, notwithstanding the clear mandate assigned to them by Art. 68 TFEU. Looking forward to the new Strategic Guidelines to be adopted in … Read more