Reinforcing procedural safeguards in criminal proceedings

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

  • Through this important training seminar, the EJTN was helping to ensure that the EU Directives on procedural safeguards in criminal proceedings will be effectively upheld in participants’ daily praxes.

The EJTN was at Malta’s Fort Saint Elmo, one of the magnificent fortifications around Valletta, holding its well-acclaimed ‘Procedural safeguards in criminal proceedings in the EU in practice’ training seminar.

Effective and enhanced cooperation in criminal matters within the EU is essential to confidence amongst the judicial authorities in the EU Member States. The need to be able to trust each other’s criminal justice systems requires a better understanding of the various European legal systems. Based on Article 82.2(b) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), a strong emphasis has been placed on strengthening procedural rights for suspects and accused persons in criminal proceedings by the way of EU Directives establishing a body of a common minimum level of procedural rights that can be enforced by EU law.

This important day-and-a-half training seminar in Malta gave participants an overview as well as a deeper understanding of criminal defence rights under a set of EU Directives designed to strengthen procedural safeguards (interpretation and translation, information and access to a lawyer, presumption of innocence and minors in criminal proceedings). Additionally, the seminar focussed on a related preliminary ruling of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).

Judge Teresa Magno

Hands-on workshops
The training seminar combined key note speeches, presentations and plenary briefings directed by a panel of acclaimed international experts. EJTN’s acclaimed ‘learning-by-doing’ methodology was adopted for the hands-on practical workshops. Furthermore, the training seminar also served as a lively forum for the exchange of knowledge and best practices between European judicial practitioners.

Judge Thomas Cassuto from France and John Hardy QC from the UK directed the workshops and plenaries, while Professor Estella Baker was entrusted with the key note address on the ‘Road Map Directives’ for strengthening procedural rights. The lecture entitled ‘Contribution of the CJEU to the Area of Criminal Justice: what the EU Judiciary should know in relation to the initiation of the preliminary ruling proceedings’ was help by Judge Teresa Magno, representing EUROJUST in the training seminar.

Practitioners from Austria, Bulgaria, Italy, Poland, Germany, Spain and Slovenia were present at the seminar. Ms Marie Compere, from EJTN’s Member organisation of The French National School for the Judiciary, was the EJTN Activity Coordinator for the seminar.

EJTN is proud to have provided such a seminal training seminar, which will help ensure that the EU Directives on procedural safeguards in criminal proceedings will be effectively upheld in participants’ daily praxes.