Agreement between the Republic of Lithuania and the Kingdom of Spain on Co-operation in Detecting, Investigating and Preventing Criminal Offences


Published: 2007-03-12

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AGREEMENT
BETWEEN
THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
AND
THE KINGDOM OF SPAIN
ON CO-OPERATION IN DETECTIng, INVESTIGATIng AND PREVENTIng criminal offences
 
The Republic of Lithuania and the Kingdom of Spain, hereinafter referred to as “the Parties“,
 
desiring to promote the relationship of friendship and co-operation between the Parties,
 
aware of the serious threat of international organised crime, terrorism and other forms of crime to the social and economic development and public security of the States of the Parties,
 
convinced that the effective bilateral co-operation enables the competent authorities of the Parties to perform their respective tasks in detecting, investigating and preventing criminal offences more effectively,
 
wishing to establish a mechanism for such co-operation and make special arrangements for this purpose,
 
recognizing the advantages offered in this field by the EU membership,
 
guided by the principles of equality and mutual benefit,
 
duly observing their respective national legislation and having due regard to the international commitments that are binding the Parties and their States and referring in particular to the European Convention on the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms of 4 November 1950 and its Protocols, the Council of Europe Convention for the Protection of Individuals with regard to Automatic Processing of Personal Data of 28 January 1981, the  Convention Based on Article K.3 of the Treaty on European Union, on the Establishment of a European Police Office of 26 December 1995 (Europol Convention) and its Protocols, the  United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime of 15 December 2000 and its Protocols, the European Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters of 20 April 1959 and its protocols and the Convention established by the Council in accordance with Article 34 of the Treaty on European Union, on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters between the Member States of the European Union of 29 May 2000 and its Protocols,
 
have agreed as follows:
 
 
Article 1
Definitions
 
For the purposes of this Agreement:
1)    "competent authority" means any public body authorised to perform certain functions within the limits of its competence, relating to detecting, investigating and preventing criminal offences;
2)    "official" means any representative of a competent authority authorised to perform certain functions relating to detecting, investigating and preventing criminal offences;
3)    "liaison officer" means a representative of one of the Parties seconded to the State  of the other Party or a third country or an international organisation to establish and maintain contacts with the authorities of those countries or international organisations with the view to assist in detecting, investigating and preventing criminal offences;
4)    "joint investigation team" means any investigation team set up by mutual agreement of the authorities of the Parties for a specific purpose and a limited period, whose members, officials, may arrive to the territory of the State of the other Party to facilitate in that territory in carrying out operations relating to crime detection, investigation and prevention;
5)    "information" means personal data, as well as information on incidents, circumstances and characteristics, and any other data within the limits of this Agreement;
6)    "personal data" means any information of any type relating to an identified or identifiable individual;
7)    "processing of personal data" means any operation or a set of operations performed upon personal data.
 
Article 2
Areas of co-operation
 
1.    The Parties undertake to co-operate under this Agreement in detecting, investigating and preventing criminal offences provided in the documents, referred to in the Preamble of this Agreement, in particular:
(1)    offences against life or limb [ES: physical integrity];
(2)    offences involving terrorism;
(3)    trafficking in human beings, including illegal deprivation of liberty and forced prostitution;
(4)    child pornography and sexual exploitation of children;
(5)    illicit manufacture of and trafficking in narcotic and psychotropic substances and other toxic substances and their precursors;
(6)    thefts and illicit production of, trafficking in and possession of arms, ammunition and explosives and chemical, biological, radioactive and other hazardous materials, as well as military equipment, dual-use technologies, related services and goods;
(7)    money laundering;
(8)    illicit trafficking in vehicles;
(9)    cyber crime and offences related to the functioning of information systems and networks;
(10)  offences against property, including extortion, thefts of and illicit trafficking in cultural valuables;
(11)  forgery offences and use of forged identity and travel documents;
(12)  forgery of money and other means of payment, financial documents and securities as well as other documents, and putting them into circulation and using as genuine;
(13)  smuggling and other offences against the economy and business order, including illegal financial operations and legalization of income derived from criminal activity;
(14)  offences involving corruption.
 
2.    The Parties also undertake to co-operate in:
(1)    locating the missing persons and assisting to establish the identity of persons and unidentified corpses;
(2)    locating persons suspected of being involved in the commission of criminal offences or persons evading punishment for the committed criminal offences;
(3)    locating objects related to committed criminal offences, on the territory of the State of one of the Parties that have been unlawfully taken into possession on the territory of the State of the other Party;
(4)    providing effective protection to witnesses and victims, as well as persons who take part in operational activity or provide assistance to competent authorities of the Parties.
 
3.    By mutual agreement, the Parties may co-operate under this Agreement in any other area provided that this is compatible with the purposes of this Agreement.
 
4.    In all cases, co-operation under this Agreement shall not include the issues of providing legal and judicial assistance in criminal matters and extradition or transfer of offenders subject to the European arrest warrant.
 
Article 3
Forms of co-operation
 
The Parties shall co-operate under this Agreement by:
(1)    exchanging information relevant to this Agreement and its implementation;
(2)    setting up joint investigation teams and participating in their operations;
(3)    providing each other assistance through liaison officers;
(4)    providing scientific and technical assistance in forensic expert examination of objects;
(5)    exchanging expertise in working methods and equipment used;
(6)    providing assistance in staff training and perfecting their expertise;
(7)    implementing other co-operation arrangements.
 
Article 4
Authorities
 
1.    For the purpose of implementing this Agreement, the competent authorities of the Parties and their designated experts shall cooperate directly. The competent authorities of the Parties are:
-     In the Republic of Lithuania:
Ministry of the Interior,
Police Department under the Ministry of the Interior;
State Border Guard Service under the Ministry of the Interior;
Financial Crime Investigation Service under the Ministry of the Interior;
State Security Department;
Customs Department under the Ministry of Finance;
Special Investigation Service.
-     in Kingdom of Spain:
The Ministry of Interior without prejudice to the competencies which be the responsibility of other ministries.
 
2.    The Parties shall as soon as possible inform each other of any change relating to the competent authorities and their contact data.
 
3.    The competent authorities of the Parties may, within the limits of their competence, determine specific areas and forms of co-operation by separate mutual agreements.
 
Article 5
Joint investigation teams
 
1.    Where the authorities of one Party are conducting a complicated investigation into a criminal offence of international nature or where the circumstances of the case require concerted action of the authorities of both the Parties, the Parties may, by mutual agreement, set up a joint investigation team for a specific purpose and a limited period of time, which may be extended by mutual consent.
 
2.    A joint investigation team shall be set up and operate in accordance with the procedures and under the conditions provided for in the Council Framework Decision 2002/465/JHA of 13 June 2002 on joint investigation teams, the European Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters of 20 April 1959 and its protocols and the Convention established by the Council in accordance with Article 34 of the Treaty on European Union, on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters between the Member States of the European Union of 29 May 2000. The joint investigation team shall carry out its operations in conformity with the national legislation of the State of the Party in whose territory it operates and under supervision of the competent national authority.
 
Article 6
Liaison officers
 
1.    In order to promote co-operation and for the appropriate implementation of this Agreement, the Parties may, by mutual agreement, second their liaison officers for a limited or unlimited period to be posted in each other‘s territory of the State.
 
2.    Liaison officers shall provide information and perform other tasks under the instructions of the seconding Party and, within the limits of their competence, shall execute requests for assistance of the authorities of the Party to the territory of the State whereto they have been seconded. In performing their functions, liaison officers shall comply with the national legislation of that State to which they are seconded.
 
3.    Liaison officers shall be regarded as officials of the State of the Party to the territory of the State whereto they are seconded with respect to offences committed against them or by them during the performance of the functions referred to in paragraph 2 of this Article.
 
4.    The seconding Party shall be liable for any damage caused by its liaison officers during the performance of the functions referred to in paragraph 2 of this Article, in accordance with the national legislation of the Party in the territory of the State whereat they are seconded. The Party in the territory of the State whereat the damage was caused shall make good such damage under the conditions applicable to damage caused by its own officials and the seconding Party shall reimburse the latter in full any sums it has paid to the victims or persons entitled on their behalf.
 
5.    The parties may agree that in accordance with the procedures and conditions provided for in the Council Decision 2003/170/JHA of 27 February 2003 on the common use of liaison officers posted abroad by the law enforcement agencies of the Member States, a liaison officer seconded by one Party to one or more third countries or international organizations will also represent the interests of the other Party.
 
Article 7
Requests for assistance
 
1.    Transmission of information and other forms of co-operation referred to in Article 3 of this Agreement shall be implemented by the competent authorities in response to requests for assistance in writing. Such co-operation may also be maintained through liaison officers, if they are designated.
 
2.    A request for assistance shall contain all the information required for its execution and shall be accompanied by duly certified copies of documents enabling its execution.
 
3.    When the competent authority receives a request for assistance (the requested authority) which is not within its competence, it shall as soon as possible transfer such a request to the other competent authority of the same Party which can execute it and shall notify of it the competent authority of the other Party which has submitted that request for assistance (the requesting authority).
 
4.    The requested authority shall execute a request for assistance as soon as possible. It may also request the requesting authority of the other Party for additional information when it appears necessary for the execution of the request or when it can facilitate such execution.
 
5.    If there are grounds for the requested authority to believe that the request, if granted, is likely to prejudice the sovereignty or security of the respective State or that it would be contrary to its national legislation, international commitments or other essential national interests, it may refuse to execute it, wholly or partially, or impose conditions on its execution. Assistance may also be refused if the act for which the request for assistance was made is not an offence under the national legislation of the requested authority.  In the event of refusal, the requested authority shall promptly inform in writing the requesting authority and state the reasons for such refusal.
 
6.    The competent authorities may on its own initiative communicate information to the competent authorities of the other Party or take other action to assist in detecting, investigating or preventing criminal offences.
 
Article 8
Personal data protection
 
 
In processing personal data under this Agreement, the competent authorities of the Parties shall comply with the Council of Europe Convention for the Protection of Individuals with regard to Automatic Processing of Personal Data of 28 January 1981, their respective national legislation and the following provisions:
 
(1)   the competent authority transmitting personal data (the transmitting authority) shall be responsible for the correctness of the personal data transmitted and shall ensure that they are transmitted only to the extent necessary for the purposes of this Agreement;
 
(2)   the competent authority receiving personal data (the receiving authority) shall use the personal data transmitted to it solely for the purposes and under the conditions determined by the transmitting authority;
 
(3)   upon request by the transmitting authority, the receiving authority shall provide  information concerning the use of the personal data received and  the results thus achieved;
 
(4)   should it prove that the transmitted personal data were incorrect or inaccurate or that these personal data should not have been transmitted pursuant to the national legislation of the transmitting authority, the transmitting authority shall immediately notify of this fact the receiving authority of the other Party and the latter shall without delay rectify or destroy them;
 
(5)   the person whose personal data have been transmitted, at his request and in accordance with the national legislation of the relevant Party, must be given information on the data and their intended use; in the interests of national security and public order, the transmission of such information to the person concerned may be refused;
 
(6)   the transmitting authority shall set a period at the expiry whereof the personal data transmitted shall be destroyed; this notwithstanding, the personal data transmitted shall be destroyed when they are no longer necessary for the purposes for which they have been transmitted; the transmitting authority shall be immediately notified of all instances and reasons of such destruction of personal data;
 
(7)   the transmitting and receiving authorities shall keep records of the transmission, receipt and destruction of  personal data;
 
(8)   the authorities transmitting and receiving personal data shall properly safeguard them from unauthorized access, alteration without authorization of the transmitting authority, accidental or unauthorized destruction, or unauthorized disclosure.
 
 
Article 9
Confidentiality
 
1.    The competent authority receiving information under this Agreement shall ensure the level of confidentiality accorded to it by the transmitting authority of the other Party.
2.    The competent authority receiving information under this Agreement may transmit it to a third party only with a prior written consent of the transmitting authority of the other Party.
 
Article 10
Evaluation of the implementation of the Agreement
 
The competent authorities of the Parties shall set up a group consisting of an equal number of representatives of the competent authorities of each Party for the evaluation of the implementation of this Agreement, which at least every three years after the entry into force of the Agreement shall submit evaluation reports to the competent authorities of the Parties and, where appropriate, proposals on the improvement of practical and legal aspects of the co-operation between the Parties.
 
Article 11
Languages for co-operation and the validity of documents
 
1.    Requests for assistance and other documents under this Agreement shall be drawn in the official language of the transmitting authority of the Party and shall be submitted accompanied by a translation into the official language of the other Party or English.
 
2.    Documents drawn up by and certified by the competent authorities of one Party in the territory of the State whereof in conformity with its national legislation shall be accepted in the territory of the State of the other Party without any further certification or authentication.
 
Article 12
Costs
 
Costs resulting from the implementation of this Agreement shall be covered by each Party to the extent necessary to fulfill its obligations under this Agreement. Where appropriate, the competent authorities of the Parties in each individual case may decide otherwise.
 
Article 13
Other international commitments
 
Nothing in this Agreement shall affect any commitments arising for the Parties and their States from other international bilateral or multilateral agreements by which either of the Parties and their States may be bound.
 
Article 14
Dispute settlement
 
Any dispute between the Parties concerning the interpretation or the application of this Agreement shall be settled through negotiation or consultation.
 
Article 15
Final provisions
 
1.    This Agreement shall enter into force thirty (30) days after the date on which the Parties have notified each other in writing through diplomatic channels that the necessary legal procedures for the entry into force of the Agreement have been fulfilled in accordance with the national legislation of the Parties.
 
2.    This Agreement may be amended by mutual agreement of the Parties. Such amendments shall come into force in accordance with the procedure laid down in paragraph 1 of this Article.
 
3.    This Agreement is made for an unlimited period of time and may be terminated by either Party by giving the other Party at least six (6) months’ notice in writing through diplomatic channels. Termination of this Agreement shall not affect the performance of the obligations of the Parties taken on up to the effective date of such termination, unless otherwise agreed.
 
 
DONE at Madrid, on 3 December 2007, in two original copies in the Lithuanian, Spanish and English languages, all these texts being equally authentic. In case of any divergence in the interpretation of this Agreement, the English text shall prevail.
 
 
 
For the Republic of Lithuania       Raimondas Šukys Minister of the Interior
For the Kingdom of Spain       Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba Minister of the Interior