France / Police Cooperation

What are EMPACTs? Why is the EU security cycle so important?

09 October 2020

The Police Cooperation component of EL PAcCTO held a meeting with the French coordination of the EMPACTs (the European Multidisciplinary Platforms Against Criminal Threats) which aimed to expand contacts and visibility on key issues for the Presidency pro tempore of the Council of the EU, as well as strengthen collaboration with the Programme. During the meeting, Lieutenant Colonel Etienne Girard, EMPACTs’ National Coordinator, answered the following questions:

What are the objectives of the EMPACTs?

The four main objectives of an EMPACT are:

  1. To work from a SOCTA threat analysis (a Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment).
  2. To cooperate between various European countries in preparing investigations leading, in particular, to arrest operations and joint investigation teams.
  3. To benefit from Europol agreements with third countries.
  4. To use public-private partnerships to improve relationships between public partners and private actors.

The operational objective of the EMPACT cycles is to dismantle organised criminal networks, optimise the possibility of investigators meeting at Europol to discuss operational files, coordinate arrests and prepare joint investigation teams (JITs). The EMPACT cycle has a budget of four million euros that enables it to carry out its actions.

Why is the European Union’s political cycle so important in terms of security and how could it be possible to create synergies with IDEAL (Instrument for Threat Assessment in Latin America)?

Criminal priorities that impact on the EU are taken from SOCTA. These include computer attacks, human trafficking, illegal immigration, money laundering, drug trafficking, the sexual exploitation of minors, fraud and environmental crimes. The main objective of the EMPACT cycle is to facilitate and promote cooperation between Member States against identified criminal threats through the use of their law enforcement agencies. An evaluation consortium has recognised the effectiveness of the cycle in the fight against transnational crime.

As the priorities for action identified in the political cycle are identical in part to those affecting Latin America, it would undoubtedly be very useful to have a Latin American Threat Assessment Instrument (IDEAL, its Latin American acronym). Given that certain criminal priorities are common in both areas (drug trafficking, environmental crimes), it is essential that the authorities in the Latin American countries synchronise their actions.

Learn more about EMPACT

During meetings with the Police Cooperation component, an encounter was also held with the DCI Sub-Directorate for Multilateral Cooperation and Partnerships (SDCMP) and its Deputy Director, General Emmanuel Miglierina, who insisted on the great interest of the French Ministry of the Interior in actively participating in the implementation of EL PAcCTO II. He also positively valued the possibility that France will participate in the next Ameripol summit, in which the Ministry of the Interior has observer status. We asked the deputy director about the following questions:

What is France’s interest in participating in a programme like EL PAcCTO?

EL PAcCTO is an important regional programme that enables France to gather internal security for itself, in particular through the cooperation networks created.

What are the priorities of the Directorate for International Cooperation with Latin America?

The priorities are determined by the major directorates of the operational services within the Ministry of the Interior.

The priorities defined by these directorates on issues such as immigration, human trafficking, environmental crimes, money laundering and drug trafficking mean that these operational services are very interested in cooperating with Latin America.

Find out more about the French Ministry of the Interior’s Directorate for International Cooperation

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