What is the EURIEC

National borders don't stop criminals. Stronger still, criminals intentionally use national borders in order to hide their activities from investigative and other authorities. National borders prove to be a major obstacle in the fight against such undermining crime. Every country has its own legislation and language, for instance, and there are differences in terms of powers and responsibilities. The degree of awareness of undermining crime and, more specifically, the role of the administration in the fight against it, also plays an important role.

On 17 May 2018, the RIEC Limburg, along with Belgian ARIECs and the competent authorities in North Rhine-Westphalia, was instructed to set up a Euro-regional Information and Expertise Centre to offer support for the administrative fight against cross-border undermining crime, the EURIEC. This instruction was issued by means of a letter of intent that was signed by Jan Jambon (the former Minister for Security and Domestic Affairs in Belgium), Herbert Reul (the North Rhine-Westphalia Innenminister) and Ferdinand Grapperhaus (the Minister of Security and Justice in the Netherlands).

Awareness & Casuistry

The EURIEC at the RIEC Limburg was set up to give cross-border administrative collaboration a boost by means of:

1. Awareness: make administrative authorities in Belgium, North Rhine-Westphalia (Germany) and the Netherlands aware of the need for international collaboration and the exchange of information in the field of the administrative fight against undermining crime.

2. Casuistry: investigate the possibilities and impossibilities of a cross-border exchange of information between administrative authorities on the basis of specific casuistry with an international component (the Netherlands, Belgium or North Rhine-Westphalia). The findings thereof will be presented to the responsible organisations in the countries in question.

How does the EURIEC work?

The EURIEC is operational from September 2019 and it supports
casuistry for the entire border area between the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. This is done in close collaboration with the Dutch RIECs, the Belgian ARIECs and the German partners.

Within the EURIEC, every participating country is represented by one or more members of staff. The three account managers, three lawyers, the coordinator and the project assistant will support Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany in their fight against international cases. The world of science is also involved. The EURIEC receives procedural and substantive support from the Fachhochschule für öffentliche Verwaltung Köln (DE), the Catholic University of Leuven (BE) and Maastricht University (NL).

In order to investigate the possibilities and impossibilities of issuing and receiving information, the EURIEC aims to set up expert  platforms for administrative authorities. The EURIEC facilitates the collaboration, it brings people into contact with each other, it analyses information and it writes perspectives for action for the partners at home and abroad. For every case, the possibilities and restrictions of the cross-border exchange of information are explained by means of legal substantiation for administrative purposes.