Mutual Recognition and Confiscation of Assets: An EU Perspective
The confiscation of assets derived from criminal activities represents an essential tool of the European strategy in the fight against organised crimes. In particular, the European legislator is trying to improve judicial cooperation in this sector through the mutual recognition of confiscation with the Framework Decision 2006/783/JHA. This principle has to be built on harmonisation of confiscation models (Framework Decision 2005/212 and Directive 42/2014) and on mutual trust, which demands respect of the safeguards of the rule of law. This chapter analyses these two connected aspects, with specific emphasis on extended confiscation and non-conviction based confiscation. Even though Directive 42/2014 does not adopt substantially the latter model of confiscation, in approving it the European Parliament and the Council issued a Statement which urged the Commission towards further effort of analysis in order to identify a model of actio in rem confiscation in respect of shared common traditions.