Brdo Congress Centre, 2011.09.28



Workshop 2 of the Introduction of the Requirements for Establishing Joint Investigation Teams to Fight Trafficking in Human Beings (JIT–THB) in South East Europe Project

The participants at the second JIT–THB workshop held on 28th through 30th September 2011 at the Brdo Congress Centre were presented details of the practical aspects of setting up JITs and the assistance and support that Europol and Eurojust can offer for their operation.

Representatives of Bulgaria and Romania presented the experience gained by two investigation teams set up in cooperation with the United Kingdom for the purpose of dismantling organised crime groups that smuggled Roma children to London. In the outcome of these two operations JIT was recognised as an efficient tool for addressing international crime that is quick at adapting to law enforcement action. Swift exchange of information, regular communication and trust among JIT members are the strongest weapon against resilient and changing crime groups. All cases related to the two operations were tried in court. The following were highlighted as possible obstacles in setting up JITs: differences in legal arrangements, lack of finance and complex procedures for setting-up a JIT.
To overcome these, Europol and Eurojust representatives have again called upon conference participants from the police and prosecution sectors to take advantage of the assistance made available by the two agencies. Both are able to provide support before a JIT is set up in cases where questions as to its necessity are being raised, and later in the preparation of set-up documents, and through financial, analytical and technical support.
Presenters have given special attention to the substance of a JIT agreement defining the obligations and partnership relations of a team. The participants were handed out a sample agreement serving as a template for determining the participating parties, tasks, obligations, competences and other practical and legal aspects of cooperation. Europol and Eurojust representatives in particular have highlighted the fact that a well-drafted agreement helps to circumvent inconveniences arising in subsequent phases.

The participants were presented with financial aspects of a JIT-operation and the availability of communication channels for secure transmission of information such as SIENA and SECI.
The workshop was attended by representatives of police forces and prosecution services from Albania, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia, Macedonia, Moldova, Romania, Serbia and Slovenia, the Slovenian liaison officer at the SECI Centre and representatives of Europol and Eurojust. The next workshop is to be held in late November this year, in Sophia. It will focus on the issue of establishing JITs in the context of trafficking in human beings.
The Project, which is co-financed by the European Commission, is aimed at creating a network of law enforcement representatives of the participating states, building trust among them and using JITs as a tool in the fight against trafficking in human beings.

Project Partners

Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Slovenia
Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Bulgaria
Prosecutor’s Office of the Republic of Bulgaria
Office of the State Prosecutor General of the Republic of Slovenia