APPENDIX 3: CALL FOR EVIDENCE |
The Sub-Committee on Justice and Institutions is
conducting an inquiry into aspects of EU criminal justice policy
and invites you to submit written evidence to the inquiry. Please
note the limitations on the scope of this inquiry mentioned below.
There is now a growing body of EU legislation in
the field of criminal justice, including measures in the areas
of criminal procedure with which our inquiry is concerned. Perhaps
the most high profile is the European Arrest Warrant, but there
are also measures in relation to the status of victims, on mutual
assistance in gathering evidence and on pre-trial bail. The Commission
and Member States have made a number of proposals since the new
arrangements for an area of freedom, security and justice set
out in the Lisbon Treaty have come into force.
The Sub-Committee on Justice and Institutions has
scrutinised individual measures as they have been proposed and
retains under scrutiny a number of recent proposals. It has also
undertaken inquiries into criminal justice policy.
The Sub-Committee now seeks to assess this developing area of
EU policy insofar as it relates to particular areas of EU competence.
Scope of the inquiry
In terms of EU competence, the inquiry is limited
to the following areas, broadly those referred to in Article 82(2)
of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU (TFEU)
- investigation of offences,
- pre-trial procedure,
- procedural rights of suspects and defendants,
- the position of victims of crime.
The inquiry will not consider other areas of criminal
justice policy, as set out in Articles 82-87 TFEU.
In relation to those areas of policy, the inquiry
will focus on three broad themes, on which we would welcome views.
Specific questions are set out in italics:
(1) Is an EU system of criminal procedural law
It is said that national criminal justice systems
reflect the societies in which they have developed. Can the EU
establish a system which adequately reflects all the constituent
societies within the EU?
Are EU instruments necessary to safeguard the rights
of citizens involved in criminal proceedings, in addition to the
European Convention on Human Rights, the EU Charter of Fundamental
Rights and the other multilateral and bilateral agreements?
To what extent does existing EU legislation affect
national criminal justice systems?
To what extent does existing EU legislation and proposed
legislation go further than the existing EU or international instruments,
or UK law?
What is the effect of importing the jurisdiction
of the Court of Justice of the EU? Will the Court of Justice be
able to cope with litigation arising from EU legislation?
Are there other areas of criminal procedure which
should be covered by EU legislation and, conversely, are there
areas which are covered unnecessarily?
(2) Does EU legislation in the areas within scope
What practical benefits does EU legislation bringfor
citizens, law enforcement authorities, courts?
Do the benefits of EU legislation outweigh the disadvantages?
Does EU legislation promote mutual trust between
national authorities and facilitate judicial and police co-operation
Should EU minimum standards for criminal procedure
apply only to cross-border cases?
(3) The impact of the UK opt-in
To what extent should the UK opt in to legislation
in this area?
What factors should inform the UK Government's decisions
on opting in?
Will the fact that the UK has not opted in to some
EU legislation undermine the trust of authorities of other Member
States in the UK criminal justice system? If so how will this
affect UK nationals involved in criminal proceedings in other
Member States and the ability of the UK authorities to investigate
and prosecute cross-border crimes.
You need not respond to all those points, and we
welcome views on any other aspects of the matters within the scope
of the inquiry.
Written evidence is invited in response to this
Call for Evidence, to arrive no later than 7 December 2011.
3 November 2011
178 See our Reports: Procedural Rights in Criminal
Proceedings (February 2005); European Arrest Warrant-Recent
Developments (April 2006); Breaking the deadlock: what
future for EU procedural rights (January 2007); European
Supervision Order (July 2007); Procedural rights in EU
criminal proceedings-an update (May 2009). Back