Experts take stock of successes in JITs and envisage future developments on the occasion of the 13th annual meeting of the JITs Network
The 13th meeting of National Experts on JITs took place at Eurojust on 17 and 18 May 2017. Organised with the support of Eurojust and Europol, it brought together experts from the vast majority of Member States, representatives of EU institutions and agencies, as well as international bodies involved in this area.
Participants discussed latest developments in JITs, including the first experiences with the USA and Switzerland. Recent successes were presented, particularly a JIT established in a drug trafficking and Hawala money laundering case. Experts were also given an overview of operational perspectives opened by the implementation of the Europol Regulation on JITs operations.
Following discussions in parallel workshops, participants agreed on the need to modernise the framework of the JITs Network and asked the Secretariat to propose guidelines to supplement the Council document on the basis of which the network still operates. Experts had a fruitful exchange with the film director, Olivier Ballande, whose film, Marriages for sale, was screened, in the context of an exchange of views on raising awareness of JITs.
JITs experts also considered possible avenues to improve the exchange of information between JIT partners and supported the idea of a collaborative operational environment, to be further explored by Eurojust and Europol.
In line with the development of JITs, the latest figures on financial support to JITs were presented, which demonstrated a steady increase in the number of applications and funded JITs in 2016 and 2017 (for more information, see Eurojust Annual Report 2016, page 20). A first version of the JITs portal was presented, with an IT tool enabling online submission of funding applications, which will be launched by Eurojust before the end of 2017.