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European Cross Border Criminal Justice


European criminal justice, the asylum acquis, the Citizen’s Directive, child abduction and human rights - all recognizable as distinct areas of expertise, and all areas with a cross-border facet. Over the years, the AIRE Centre’s work in all these fields has shown time and time again that these areas can rarely be regarded in isolation and yet legislation continues to be adopted without the joined-up thinking that is required.

Building upon the AIRE Centre’s case work and training, funding was obtained in 2008 from the European Commission to expand our work on issues with cross-border aspects. The European Cross Border Justice Project (‘ECJP’) focus was European Criminal Justice and in particular the flagship measure on the European Arrest Warrant (EAW). The ECJP aim was to assist in the promotion of judicial cooperation by increasing mutual trust in each member state’s criminal justice system. The tools used to achieve this were: published research into the criminal justice system’s of the ECJP’s key countries (Croatia, Cyprus, Slovenia and the UK); and organising workshops which provided unique opportunities for judges, practitioners, government officials, academics and NGOs to learn about and discuss each other’s systems.

As an extension of the ECJP, the AIRE Centre also ran an advice clinic with Hibiscus on the above issues. Beyond the ECJP, work on cross-border issues continued through the AIRE Centre’s casework, training, and participation in expert meetings including the Jusitce Forum and LEAP (FTI).

At the conclusion of the ECJP (July 2010), further funds have been obtained from the Law Society Charity, to enable the work of the project to continue, in particular the provision of advice to individuals and their advisers. The focus of this work remains the EAW whilst interacting with other interest areas of the AIRE Centre.

In this area the AIRE Centre:

  • Provides advice to individuals and to their representatives or advisers;
  • Undertakes cases before the ECtHR and domestic courts as either the representative on record, as joint representative, adviser to the representative or as a third party intervenor.
  • Conducts training and participates in events;
  • Provides expert opinions, submissions and interventions;

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