Latin America / Covid-19

Progress made in the cooperation between EU and Latin American justice systems

01 June 2020

Last Friday the Cooperation between Justice Systems component held the webinar entitled “Disciplinary and Ethical System of the Judiciary” the participants included judicial bodies from Argentina, Costa Rica, Mexico, Peru, Panama, Paraguay and the Latin American Judicial Summit. Three European experts from the Spanish General Council of the Judiciary also participated. The webinar’s objectives were to:

  • define the regulatory difficulties regarding disciplinary rules
  • differentiate disciplinary and ethical channels 
  • establish the bases for new continuation activities in this area

In addition, last week the EL PAcCTO programme’s justice component also organised, in collaboration with the Ibero-American Association of Public Prosecutors (AIAMP), the webinar entitled “Drug Trafficking and Lockdown: the Impact on Criminal Organisations and Drug Consumption”. 60 participants from the EU and Latin America debated the impact of the lockdown and the measures adopted by the different States regarding the drug problem. Smuggling, the new methods being used and the situation of people with consumption problems were also discussed.

Fighting organised crime alongside Ecuador’s National Assembly

Furthermore, the inter-Justice System’s cooperation component was present at the Commission for Justice of Ecuador’s National Assembly .

The aim was to set out the need and conditions for adopting a legislative amendment that would deepen jurisdictional specialisation against corruption and organised crime.

The experiences shared in numerous regional workshops organised by EL PAcCTO had highlighted the need for specialisation as a fundamental measure to effectively combat organised crime and guarantee the institutions’ indemnity against it.

The activity is the result of a seminar held together with the Judicial Council, during which this and other measures were presented as a broad technical consensus among the operators working to combat organised crime.

The Assembly is evaluating whether to throw its support behind this fundamental measure.

Protecting women who are the victims of crime in South America

Last week EL PAcCTO also participated in the Specialised Meeting of Public Prosecutors of MERCOSUR (REMPM) via the proposal for new international instruments that enable the provision of protection for women who are victims of crime. Not only in the event of gender-based violence, but also in cases of organised crime.

In today’s world, characterised by personal mobility, women who are victims of crime run the risk of losing the protection provided by the justice system in the country where a crime was committed should they make use of their freedom to move to another country. In addition to guaranteeing their personal protection and generating care mechanisms within the host state, which is frequently their home country, it is necessary to transfer the restraining orders or measures banning communication that may have been established.

This measure, on which the programme is already working, has been transferred to a privileged forum formed by the Attorney Generals of South America. In that same forum, EL PAcCTO presented the results of the COVID Justice Channel.