The Online Seminar on Standards and Practice in Asset Recovery gathered more than 100 participants

The AIRE Centre and the Regional Anti-Corruption Initiative (RAI) held a seminar on standards and practices of confiscation of criminal assets on February 7, 2022. The seminar brought together more than 100 judges and prosecutors, as well as advisers and associates in judicial institutions in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro. The event was part of a series of joint activities dedicated to building the capacity of the judiciary in respect of this important topic, and is a part of wider efforts to strengthen the rule of law in the region, under the project “Combating corruption and organised crime in the Western Balkans through strengthening regional cooperation in asset recovery” funded by the United Kingdom Government.

Lecturers at the seminar included Judge of the Supreme Court of Cassation of the Republic of Serbia, Radmila Dragicevic Dicic, Special Prosecutor in the Special State Prosecutor’s Office of Montenegro, Milos Soskic and Professor of the Faculty of Criminology and Security Studies at the University of Sarajevo, Dr. Eldan Mujanovic.

The lecturers emphasised the importance of the permanent confiscation of criminal assets and of asset identification and recovery. They also explained the relevant international and domestic standards for extended confiscation of criminal assets.

“Respecting all the similarities, but also differences in legal regulations, institutional arrangements and the level of development of judicial practice in the region, mutual cooperation of police, prosecutorial, judicial and other bodies involved in this area must be continuously developed. The perpetrators of these crimes cooperate very well regionally, and among other things, they use the borders to cover up illegally acquired property in other jurisdictions,” said Dr. Eldan Mujanović.

Speaking about practical aspects of the prosecutor’s work in the process of proving that certain assets have originated from criminal activity, Special Prosecutor Milos Soskic outlined the importance of the focus on details in performing the financial investigation.

In her concluding remarks, Judge Radmila Dragicevic Dicic highlighted the importance of familiarising citizens in the region with the relevant laws and their application.