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Monday 2 October 2023 Dublin: 13°C
# Criminal Assets
EU directive will make it easier to freeze and confiscate criminals’ assets
The directive will enable authorities in countries across Europe to confiscate assets even if the suspect or accused person is ill or has left the region.

RULES TO MAKE it easier for national authorities to trace, freeze, manage and confiscate criminals’ assets across the EU were backed by the Civil Liberties Committee yesterday.

This endorses an informal European Parliament and Council deal struck on 27 November.


The directive requires member states to enable the confiscation of criminal assets following a final conviction and would enable authorities in countries across Europe to confiscate assets even if the suspect or accused person is ill or has left the region.

A joint declaration by Parliament and Council is also seeking permission from the European Commission to study the feasibility of introducing non-conviction based confiscation.

The agreement would allow member states’ to confiscate assets acquired through crimes such as corruption in the private sector,  active and passive corruption involving officials of EU institutions or of the member states, participation in a criminal organisation, child pornography or cybercriminality.


The Commission is looking to add new offences to the list of those to which extended confiscation may apply also.

The directive also allows that assets that are transferred to a third party, in the belief that it would escape confiscation, may also be recovered by the authorities.

In 1996, The Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) was established in Ireland, which already has the remit to carry out investigations into the suspected proceeds of criminal conduct.

CAB identifies assets, either directly or indirectly from criminal conduct and is permitted to take appropriate action to deprive or deny those persons of the assets and the proceeds of their criminal conduct.

The European directive is looking at how confiscated assets can be used for public interest or social purposes.

The agreement is to be put to a plenary vote in Parliament in February 2014 and formally approved by the Council shortly after. Once approved, member states will have 30 months to transpose the directive into their national laws. Ireland will take part in these arrangements, but the UK and Denmark will not.

Read: The Criminal Assets Bureau has a really good rating on eBay>

Read: CAB selling criminal’s Rolex…on eBay>

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