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.

European Parliament Approves New Directive on the Protection of Whistleblowers

Friday, May 3, 2019
Author: 
Michael Plachta
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Abstract: 

On April 16, 2019, the European Parliament adopted a legislative resolution by which it approved a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the protection of whistleblowers. The new rules, adopted with 591 votes in favor, 29 against, and 33 abstentions, and already in agreement with EU ministers, lay down new, EU-wide standards to protect whistleblowers revealing breaches of EU law in a wide range of areas including public procurement, financial services, money laundering, product and transport safety, nuclear safety, public health, consumer, and data protection. Currently, only ten EU countries (France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, Netherlands, Slovakia, Sweden, and the UK) have a comprehensive law protecting whistleblowers. In the remaining EU countries, the protection granted is partial: it covers only public servants or only specific sectors (e.g. financial services) or only specific types of wrongdoings (e.g. corruption). Recent scandals, from LuxLeaks to Panama Papers to Global Laundromat, uncovered by whistleblowers illustrate how insufficient protection in one country not only negatively impacts the functioning of EU policies there, but can also spill over into other countries and into the EU as a whole.

Two Months Later, Questions Remain After the Raiding of the North Korean Embassy in Madrid

Friday, May 3, 2019
Author: 
Alex Psilakis
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Abstract: 

On April 23, 2019, the U.S. arrested Christopher Philip Ahn, a U.S. citizen and former Marine, for his alleged involvement in the February 22 raid of the North Korean embassy in Madrid. Spain, who put out the arrest warrant against Ahn, has filed a number of charges against him, including robbery, illegal restraint, and associating with criminal organization. U.S. enforcement officials learned of Ahn’s participation in the raid when Adrian Hong Chang, the de facto leader of the group, informed the FBI of Ahn’s involvement. Video surveillance captured images of Ahn as well. Awaiting extradition, Judge Jean Rosenbluth denied Ahn bond, forcing him to remain in custody. Just days after Ahn’s arrest, U.S. authorities issued an arrest warrant for Hong Chang himself. A Mexican citizen with permanent residency in the U.S., Hong Chang faces charges similar to those of Ahn, including breaking and entering, as well as causing injuries. The arrest warrant – which references information provided by Spanish authorities – labels Hong Chang as the architect and leader of the seven-person raid.

INTERPOL’s Power to Act Preemptively in Fighting Government Abuse

Friday, May 3, 2019
Author: 
Yuriy L. Nemets
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Abstract: 

In May 2018, Spanish authorities detained Bill Browder, a prominent critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin.  It has been alleged that Spain acted on an active Russian request disseminated through INTERPOL’s channels. Prior to this arrest, INTERPOL had refused to cooperate with Russia, calling Mr. Browder’s case “predominantly political.”  However, after several unsuccessful attempts to persuade the INTERPOL General Secretariat to approve a red notice, Russia reportedly put Mr. Browder on the international wanted list by disseminating an INTERPOL diffusion. Unlike notices, which are subject to the General Secretariat’s approval, governments can exchange diffusions directly, without prior approval from INTERPOL.

Family of Victim File Lawsuit against Former Sri Lankan Defense Minister for Human Rights Violations

Saturday, April 27, 2019
Author: 
Bruce Zagaris
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Abstract: 

On April 15, 2019, a U.S. District Court for the Central District of California unsealed a civil lawsuit against former Sir Lankan Defense Minister Gotabay Rajapaska, a dual U.S.-Sri Lankan citizen, seeking damages for his alleged involvement in the 2009 killing of journalist Lasantha Wickramatunga. On April 4, 2019, Ahimsa Wickramatunga, the journalist’s daughter, filed the suit under seal. The complaint against Rajapaksa alleges that he led a broad campaign against journalists during his ten years or so as defense minister, from 2005 to 2015.  On January 9, 2009, Mr. Wickramatunga, editor of The Sunday Leader at the time, was beaten to death, after he exposed alleged corruption by Rajapaksa.  The complaint alleges that men allegedly part of the Tripoli Platoon, which operated under Rajapaksa’s command, carried out the beatings.

Appearing Invested in Transitional Justice, Balkan States Remain Slow to Convict Their Own

Saturday, April 27, 2019
Author: 
Alex Psilakis
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Abstract: 

On April 10, 2019, Balkan Insight reported that the government of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Sarajevo Canton allocated over 350,000 euros of its 2019 budget to providing legal assistance to those charged with war crimes. Approximately 230,000 euros have gone to funding defendants’ lawyers, while 128,000 euros have funded legal assistance-oriented NGOs working alongside Bosnia’s ex-soldiers and former officers. Members of the Bosnian legal community praised the decision, recognizing that war crimes cases can run for years and accumulate steep legal bills. Since more than 50 ex-soldiers and former officers are currently on trial in Sarajevo, many view these funds as key to carrying out the trials against this large number of defendants. Other Balkan states, such as Croatia and Serbia, partially fund the defense of certain war crimes suspects, making the move fairly uncontroversial. Yet some members of the Serb-majority Republika Srpska have spoken out against the plan, as it only aids former members of the Bosniak-led army

U.S. Announces New Sanctions against Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua

Friday, April 26, 2019
Author: 
Bruce Zagaris
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Abstract: 

On April 17, 2019, the United States government announced new sanctions against Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua. While giving a speech in Miami, National Security Advisor John Bolton announced that the Trump administration is re-imposing limits on the amount of money Cuban Americans can send to relatives in Cuba and ordering new restrictions on U.S. citizen, nonfamily travel to Cuba. Also on April 17, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the administration will remove restrictions that have prevented lawsuits from U.S. citizens seeking compensation for property expropriated by the Cuban governments when it came to power in 1958.

        

Radovan Karadžić Sentenced to Life on Appeal

Friday, April 26, 2019
Author: 
Maria O'Sullivan
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Abstract: 

On March 20, 2019, Trial Chamber III of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) sentenced Radovan Karadžić to life in prison on appeal, an increase from his original 40 year sentence. Karadžić will not be able to appeal this verdict and the President of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals will decide the location of the imprisonment. Though the trial – which began in October of 2009 following Karadžić’s July 2008 arrest – has finally come to a close, feelings of justice are lacking.

European Parliament Adopts New Directive on the Use of Financial Information for Criminal Investigation

Friday, April 26, 2019
Author: 
Michael Plachta
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Abstract: 

On April 17, 2019, the European parliament adopted a resolution approving a new Directive intended to facilitate law enforcement authorities' access to and use of financial information held in other jurisdictions within the EU for investigations related to terrorism and other serious crimes. The Directive grants competent authorities direct access to bank account information contained in centralized registries set up in each Member State, according to the provisions of the Fifth AML Directive. The new instrument also aims to strengthen domestic and cross-border exchange of information between EU Member States' competent authorities, including law enforcement authorities and financial intelligence units, as well as with Europol. Financial information represents a valuable instrument for law enforcement authorities in the fight against crime and terrorism. As a basis for financial investigations, in particular in the area of money laundering and terrorist financing, financial data facilitates the identification of criminals and terrorists, as well as the tracing of proceeds of crime in view of their freezing or confiscation, and may serve as evidence in criminal proceedings.

Former Manager for International Airline Pleads Guilty to Acting as an Agent of the Chinese Government without Notifying the Attorney General

Friday, April 26, 2019
Author: 
Bruce Zagaris
Volume: 
35
Issue: 
5
Abstract: 

On April 17, 2019, Ying Lin pleaded guilty in the U.S. District Court in Brooklyn, New York to serving as an agent for the People’s Republic of China without notifying the Attorney General, by working at the direction and control of military officers assigned to the Permanent Mission of the PRC to the United Nations. Lin, a former manager with an international air carrier headquartered in the PRC (the Air Carrier) improperly facilitated the transport of packages from John F. Kennedy International Airport to the PRC aboard Air Carrier flights at the behest of the PRC military officers and in violation of Transportation Security Administration (TSA) regulations.

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