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GREEN PAPER on the criminal law protection of the financial interests of the European Communities and the creation of a European Public Prosecutor

(submitted by the Commission)

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

GREEN PAPER on the criminal law protection of the financial interests of the European Communities and the creation of a European Public Prosecutor

1 Introduction

1.1. Background to the Commission's proposal

1.2. Why is the Commission presenting a Green Paper today *

1.2.1. Fraud to the detriment of the Communities' financial interests: a phenomenon to be combated

1.2.2. The European Public Prosecutor's Office: an ongoing debate

1.3. The objectives of the green paper

1.3.1. Expand the debate to all interested parties

1.3.2. Deepen the discussion about the feasibility of this project

2. Premises of the dispute

2.1. European Public Prosecutor's Added Value: Reminder of the arguments on which the Commission based its 2000 proposal

2.1.1. Overcoming the fragmentation of the European criminal justice area

2.1.2. Overcome the clumsiness and inappropriateness of traditional judicial cooperation procedures between Member States

2.1.3. Judicial follow-up to administrative inquiries

2.1.4. Strengthening the organization and efficiency of investigations within the Community institutions and bodies

2.2. Respect for fundamental rights

2.3. Link to the European Union's Justice and Home Affairs priorities

2.3.1. Complementarity of the Tampere proposal and the objectives

2.3.2. Specificity of the proposal in relation to the objectives of the Tampere European Council

2.4. Legal basis

3. Main features

3.1. Substantive jurisdiction limited to the protection of the Communities' financial interests

3.1.1. A special responsibility of the communities

3.1.2. Maintaining the current scope of protection of the Community's financial interests

3.2. On the way to a common investigation and prosecution room

3.2.1. The powers of the European Public Prosecutor: centrally directed investigations and prosecutions

3.2.2. A harmonious integration into the national criminal law systems

4. Legal status and structure

4.1. Legal status of the European Public Prosecutor

4.1.1. Principle of independence

4.1.2. Requirements for appointment and removal from office

4.1.2.1. Appointment of the European Public Prosecutor

4.1.2.2. Impeachment and other circumstances ending the activity of the European Public Prosecutor

4.1.3. The European Public Prosecutor as employer

4.2. Decentralized structure of the European Public Prosecutor's Office

4.2.1. Principle of the decentralized organization of the European Deputy Public Prosecutors

4.2.1.1. Legal status of the European Deputy Public Prosecutors

4.2.1.2. Function of the European Deputy Public Prosecutors

4.2.2. Principle of being bound by instructions vis-à-vis the European Public Prosecutor

4.3. Material and financial resources for the European Public Prosecutor's Office

5. Substantive criminal law

5.1. Choice of legislative method: stand-alone Community law or harmonization of national law

5.2. Common offenses

5.2.1. Criminal offenses directed against the protection of the Community's financial interests on which the Member States have already agreed

5.2.1.1. Scam

5.2.1.2. Corruption and bribery

5.2.1.3. Money laundering

5.2.2. Other criminal offenses against the protection of the Community's financial interests

5.2.2.1. Bid fraud

5.2.2.2. Criminal Association

5.2.2.3. Abuse of authority

5.2.2.4. Breach of official secrecy

5.2.3. Possible criminal offenses beyond the protection of the Communities' financial interests

5.3. Common sanctions

5.4. Legal Person Responsibility

5.5. Statute of limitations

6. Procedure

6.1. Information and consultation

6.2. Preliminary proceedings

6.2.1. Fundamental rights

6.2.1.1. Defense rights and protection of the accused

6.2.1.2. Right not to be prosecuted twice for the same offense

6.2.2. Initiation of the investigation and prosecution

6.2.2.1. Principle of legality or principle of opportunity in law enforcement

6.2.2.2. Distribution of competences between the European Public Prosecutor and the national law enforcement authorities

6.2.3. Preliminary investigation

6.2.3.1. Investigative measures

6.2.3.2. Working relationship with the national investigative bodies

6.2.4. Completion of the preliminary investigation

6.2.4.1. Discontinuation of proceedings

6.2.4.2. Indictment

6.3. Main proceedings

6.3.1. Choice of Member State for bringing charges

6.3.2. Indictment

6.3.3. The European Communities as victims in criminal proceedings

6.3.4. Rules of evidence

6.3.4.1. Admission of the evidence

6.3.4.2. Exclusion of unlawful evidence

6.3.5. Reasons for Extending the Public Prosecution

6.3.6. Enforcement of judgment

6.4. Ensuring judicial control

6.4.1. Duties of the judge

6.4.2. Appointment of the judge in the preliminary investigation

6.4.3. Appointment of the judge responsible for controlling the bringing of charges

7. Relations with the other actors

7.1. Cooperation with the authorities of the Member States

7.2. Relations with actors in criminal cooperation within the European Union

7.2.1. Eurojust

7.2.2. Europol

7.2.3. European Judicial Network

7.3. Relations with the institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the Community

7.3.1. General

7.3.2. Future role of OLAF

7.4. Relations with third countries

8. Judicial review of the actions of the European Public Prosecutor

8.1. Vulnerable acts by the European Public Prosecutor

8.1.1. Investigative acts that result in a restriction or deprivation of liberty

8.1.2. Further investigative acts

8.1.3. terminating the proceeding

8.1.4. Indictment

8.2. Remedies / Remedies

8.2.1. The domestic legal process

8.2.1.1. In the preliminary proceedings

8.2.1.2. In the main proceedings

8.2.2. The legal route to the court of justice

9. Conclusions

ANNEX 1 Supplementary contribution from the Commission to the Intergovernmental Conference on Institutional Reforms of 29 September 2000 Protection of the Community's financial interests: the post of European Public Prosecutor

APPENDIX 2 Simplified presentation of the procedures

Appendix 3 Fictitious fraud case Involvement of the European Public Prosecutor's Office

APPENDIX 4 List of questions asked in the individual chapters

1 Introduction

The recognition that criminal acts detrimental to the financial interests of the European Communities must be punished more effectively led the Commission to propose the establishment of a European Public Prosecutor. This proposal deserves to be discussed in depth and in depth. That is why the Commission is now presenting a Green Paper on this subject.