Council Discusses Extradition of EU Citizens to Third Countries
At a video conference meeting on 4 June 2020, the ministers of justice of the EU Member States exchanged views on the issue of extradition of EU citizens to third countries. Several questions remain as to how judgements from the CJEU in recent years, in particular the judgement in the Petruhhin case (C-182/15, see eucrim 3/2016, p. 131), should be implemented in practice. In these judgments, the CJEU set several benchmarks as to how EU countries should handle extradition cases if they receive requests from countries outside the European Union against a national of another EU Member State. Problems occur especially in relation to extraditions of EU citizens for the purposes of prosecution (e.g., time limits, communication channels, and the refusal of a requested person to notify the home Member State). Ministers exchanged experiences on how their Member States cooperate with each other when they receive such requests. The Member States have applied the CJEU’s case law on a case-by-case basis so far, but the Council now suggests exploring the establishment of common working arrangements. Ministers have invited Eurojust and the European Judicial Network (EJN) to analyse how requests for the extradition of EU citizens by third countries are handled in practice, and to make suggestions in this regard.