The International Enforcement Law Reporter

The International Enforcement Law Reporter is a monthly print and online journal covering news and trends in international enforcement law.

Since September 1985, the International Enforcement Law Reporter has analyzed the premier developments in both the substantive and procedural aspects of international enforcement law. Read by practitioners, academics, and politicians, the IELR is a valuable guide to the difficult and dynamic field of international law.

Prosecutors from U.S., Colombia and Mexico Meet for Transnational Criminal Organizations Working Group

Friday, June 21, 2019
Author: 
Bruce Zagaris
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

From June 12 to 14, 2019, prosecutors from Colombia, Mexico, and the U.S. met for the second Transnational Criminal Organizations (TCO) Working Group.  The goal of the Working Group is to participate in specialized training, as well as develop joint strategies and best practices to dismantle the transnational criminal organizations (TCOs) that threaten the three countries. Experienced prosecutors from the countries benefited from trainings on international judicial cooperation and money laundering, and began crafting a road map for the development or dissemination of best practices and effective strategies to dismantle these dangerous enterprises.  With the increasing interconnectedness between Mexican cartels and Colombian drug trafficking organizations, which collaborate to improve their profits and ability to traffic narcotics, humans, weapons and other contraband into the U.S., threatening its national security, the cooperation among the prosecutors in the three countries has become even more important.

U.S. Unseals 2 Indictments Charging Iranian Citizen with Violating U.S. Export Controls and Iran Sanctions as a Related Conspirator Pleads Guilty

Friday, June 21, 2019
Author: 
Bruce Zagaris
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

On June 4, 2019, U.S. law enforcement officials announced that two separate indictments against Peyman Amiri Larijani, 33, a citizen of Iran and former resident of Istanbul, Turkey, have been unsealed. Meanwhile, on June 16, 2019, Joyce Eliabachus, an alleged co-conspirator with Larijani, pleaded guilty in Newark, New Jersey. On April 22, 2015, a 34-count indictment was returned, charging Larijani and a Turkish based company, Kral Havacilik IC VE DIS Ticaret Sirketi (Kral Aviation), with conspiracy to acquire U.S. origin aircraft parts and goods to furnish entities and end-users in Iran, as well as conceal from U.S. companies and the U.S. government that the U.S.-origin goods were destined for Iranian aviation business end users. The indictment also charged Larijani and Kral Aviation with conspiracy to make financial profit for defendants and other conspirators, and to evade the regulations, prohibitions, and licensing requirements of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA), the Iranian Transactions and Sanctions Regulations (ITSR), and the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).

Mass Protests Against Controversial Hong Kong Extradition Bill

Friday, June 21, 2019
Author: 
Michael Plachta
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

Between June 9 and June 12, 2019, Hong Kong witnessed massive and violent protests attended by up to one million. They demonstrated against a proposed extradition law that would allow suspects to be handed over to mainland Chinese authorities for prosecution. Demonstrators were shocked by the violence, when police charged on protesters, firing rubber bullets and tear gas on them. At least 72 people were hospitalized, two of which were in serious condition. Human Rights Watch, an NGO, accused the police of using "excessive force" against protesters. An immediate result of the protests was that the debate on the controversial extradition law was not held on June 12. Instead, Hong Kong's Legislative Council (LegCo) delayed a second reading of the controversial extradition bill and it is unclear when it will take place. Another victory was that the government raised the proposed threshold for extradition to crimes that carried sentences of seven years in prison, compared with a three-year threshold initially. The proposed amendments to the extradition law should be seen in a broader legal and political context. The “one country, two systems” framework, agreed to when Hong Kong was handed over to China from Britain in 1997, was meant to guarantee the territory’s civic freedoms and legal system – unique in China – for 50 years. The policy has helped preserve Hong Kong’s civil service, independent courts, freewheeling press, open internet, and other features that distinguish it from the Chinese mainland.

Recent Reports Reinforce Slow Rate of Progress in Balkan Transitional Justice

Friday, June 21, 2019
Author: 
Alex Psilakis
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

On June 17, 2019, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) issued a new report titled “War Crimes Case Management at the Prosecutor’s Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina.” The report analyzes some of the systemic issues limiting the Prosecutor’s Office in Bosnia (PO BiH), as well as the root causes of those systemic issues. However, it remains somewhat optimistic, offering conclusions and recommendations to Bosnia’s judicial institutions on how to improve their overall capacity to prosecute war crimes. Just weeks before this, in May 2019, the Humanitarian Law Centre – a Serbia-based NGO – released a new report titled “Report on the War Crimes Trials in Serbia.” While their report focuses more so on monitoring specific war crimes cases in Serbia, it offers a number of general findings which discuss why the cases are moving forward in such an inefficient manner. In tandem, these reports reinforce the worrying trend that has plagued the Balkan region for years – internal intransigence has all but prevented states from prosecuting their own war criminals.

Mass Protests Against Controversial Hong Kong Extradition Bill

Friday, June 14, 2019
Author: 
Michael Plachta
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

Between June 9 and June 12, 2019, Hong Kong witnessed a massive and violent wave of protests attended by up to one million. They demonstrated against a proposed extradition law that would allow suspects to be handed over to mainland Chinese authorities for prosecution. Demonstrators were shocked by the violence, when police charged on protesters, firing rubber bullets and tear gas. At least 72 people were hospitalized, two of which were in serious condition. Rights group Human Rights Watch accused the police of using "excessive force" against protesters. An immediate result of the protests was that the debate on the controversial extradition law was not held on June 12. Instead, Hong Kong's Legislative Council (LegCo) delayed a second reading of the controversial extradition bill and it is unclear when it will take place. Another victory was that the government raised the proposed threshold for extradition to crimes that carried sentences of seven years in prison, compared with the initial three-year threshold. The proposed amendments to the extradition law should be seen in a broader legal and political context. The “one country, two systems” framework agreed to when the UK handed Hong Kong over to China in 1997 was meant to guarantee the territory’s civic freedoms and legal system – unique in China – for 50 years. The policy has helped preserve Hong Kong’s civil service, independent courts, freewheeling press, open internet, and other features that distinguish it from the Chinese mainland.

EU Council Makes Progress on Various Justice and Law Enforcement Issues

Friday, June 14, 2019
Author: 
Michael Plachta
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

At its 3697th meeting on June 6 and 7, 2019, the European Union’s Justice and Home Affairs Council discussed and adopted position on a number of criminal justice, home, and law enforcement issues. Ministers debated the future of EU substantive criminal law based on a report presented by the Romanian presidency. The report aims to feed into the reflection process on further developing the regulatory framework in the field of EU substantive criminal law. The report and the discussion focused on the following issues: (i) defining areas where it could be necessary to broaden the regulatory framework; (ii) defining areas of substantive criminal law instruments where it could be necessary to further harmonize the sanctioning system; (iii) the need to develop a common understanding of terms that are regularly used; and (iv) analysis of the current application of the regulatory framework. While it was not possible to reach a full consensus on the issues under discussion, the Presidency has drawn some conclusions, without prejudice to the right of initiative of the Commission. Member States seem to agree that, at this stage, the emphasis should be on ensuring the effectiveness and quality of the implementation of existing EU legislation – instead of making more efforts aimed at preparing and adopting new legislative acts – and more efforts should be deployed to that effect.

Ecuador President Denies U.S. Extradition Request for Alleged Facebook Fraudster

Friday, June 14, 2019
Author: 
Bruce Zagaris
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

On June 7, 2019, Ecuador’s President Lenin Moreno denied the extradition request by the United States of Paul Ceglia, who is charged in New York with attempt to defraud Facebook Inc. founder Mark Zuckerberg. In November 2018, an Ecuadorean court authorized Ceglia’s extradition. His lawyer, Roberto Calderon, said he had appealed the extradition decision and Ceglia would remain jailed in Ecuador pending the appeal. According to Calderon, the extradition order only covered the wire fraud charge. Hence, Ceglia would not be able to be tried for mail fraud in the U.S. While Ceglia and his wife were in Ecuador, they had a third son, almost a year old at the time the Ecuadorean court authorized his extradition. In his asylum application, Ceglia cited his relationship to the baby, a citizen of the nation by birth. Ceglia’s lawyer claimed that Iasia Ceglia, who isn’t charged, could face charges of helping her husband flee if she returns to the U.S., potentially leaving the child without parents.

Airport Seizures Emphasize the Role of the Illicit Wildlife Trade in India

Friday, June 14, 2019
Author: 
Alex Psilakis
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

One day they found an African horn pit viper, two rhinoceros iguanas, and three rock iguanas. Less than two weeks before that, they discovered 18kg of peacock feathers. A month before that, they uncovered a leopard cub. The list goes on. This isn’t a zoo, but the Chennai International Airport – a location that has rapidly become a hotspot in the fight against the illegal wildlife trade. The customs department at the airport has grown used to seizing creatures and goods that smugglers seek to illegally sneak out the country, such as star tortoises and sea cucumbers. Yet the airport is facing a new challenge in curbing the smuggling of wildlife into the country. A number of reasons help to explain this development...

Trump Administration Concludes Migration Enforcement Accords with Guatemala and Mexico

Friday, June 14, 2019
Author: 
Bruce Zagaris
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

On June 1 and 7, 2019, the Trump Administration concluded migration enforcement agreements with Guatemala and Mexico. On June 1, 2019, Kevin K. McAleenan, the acting secretary for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), signed a two-year agreement with Guatemala to send up to 80 homeland security agents to Guatemala to help train the local authorities and combat human trafficking rings. DHS officials will work as “advisers” to Guatemala’s national police and migration authorities, attempting to disrupt and interdict human smuggling operations.  The idea is to cut off popular routes to the U.S. and deter migrants from starting their trips north through Mexico. The U.S. and Guatemala have signed a Memorandum of Cooperation.  DHS says the agreement permits “concrete actions” including “law enforcement training and collaboration to improve criminal investigations. In a predawn raid on May 29, the investigators jointed Guatemalan policy to break a human trafficking ring.  Guatemala served 10 arrest warrants, including for Luis Augusto Torres Rosales, known as “Bimbo.”  Authorities suspect him of illegally transporting dozens of migrants from El Salvador and Honduras through Guatemala to Mexico.

U.S. Treasury and Commerce Slap More Sanctions on Cuba

Saturday, June 8, 2019
Author: 
Bruce Zagaris
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
6
Abstract: 

On June 4, 2019, the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) issued amendments to the Cuban Assets Control Regulations (CACR) to further implement the President’s foreign policy on Cuba. These amendments complement changes to the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) Export Administration Regulations (EAR), which Commerce is also unveiling today.  These regulatory changes were announced on April 17, 2019 and include restrictions on non-family travel to Cuba. These actions continue to strengthen sanctions against Cuba in the implementation of the National Security Presidential Memorandum (NSPM) signed by the President on June 16, 2017 titled “Strengthening the Policy of the United States Toward Cuba.”  These policies continue to work to channel economic activities away from the Cuban military, intelligence, and security services.  The Treasury changes took effect on June 5, 2019 when the regulations were published in the Federal Register.

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