Administrative Measures based on Regulatory Legislation to Prevent and Tackle (Serious and Organized) Crime. Legal Possibilities and Practical Applications in 10 EU Member States
A.C.M. Spapens, M. Peters and D. Van Daele
Criminals and persons involved in serious and organized crime often do not limit their activities to purely illegal ones such as drug trafficking, fraud or property crimes. They also invest money in legal activities and businesses, for instance to exploit the revenues of their crimes or to generate a legal income. Criminals may establish or take over a construction company and then tender for government contracts. The ‘business processes’ of most types of organized crime also require legal facilities.Authorities thus have a particular interest in preventing criminals from either using the economic infrastructure to acquire a legal income or from misusing businesses to facilitate crimes and applying their criminal proceeds towards this purpose. An administrative approach applied in addition to or coordinated with the traditional instruments of criminal law is a potentially powerful tool to prevent and combat serious and organized crime. In 2011, the European Commission awarded an ISEC grant to the Dutch Ministry of Security and Justice (coordinator) to conduct a ‘study on the potential for information exchanges between administrative bodies and traditional law enforcement organizations to support the use of administrative measures within EU Member States and at EU level’.
The study aims to contribute to the existing body of knowledge concerning an administrative approach to crime in the European Union in the following manner. First, it explored the legal options available to national administrative authorities in the selected MS. Options that prevent criminals from misusing the legal infrastructure, such as licensing procedures or tender procedures. This resulted in ten separate country reports (Chapters 2-11), as well as a comparison of those legal options in the ten MS (Chapter 12). Second, it considered the practical application of the legal options available in the selected MS. The results of this empirical study are reviewed in Chapter 13. Chapter 14 explored the potential for information exchange between EU MS in support of an administrative approach to crime. Last, the conclusions and the way forward were presented in part V of this study (Chapter 15 and 16).
Tilburg University (the Netherlands) and the Catholic University of Leuven (Belgium) conducted this research, supported by the Belgian Home Affairs Ministry. The underlying report is the result of this ISEC grant.