ExtraditionExtradition is a legal process that allows the transfer of a person suspected or convicted of committing a crime from one jurisdiction to another. An individual might be extradited for the purpose of criminal prosecution or for the carrying out of a custodial sentence or detention order.

While, according to international law, each State has legal authority over people residing within its territories, many countries have extradition agreements in place with other countries around the world.

In the Member States of the European Union, national judicial authorities use the European Arrest Warrant (EAW), a region-wide judicial cooperation tool which allows countries to request and approve cross-border transfers of requested persons efficiently, without the need for political involvement.

An EAW is issued by a judicial authority of the issuing Member State, to enable the arrest or detention of the requested person, and/or the search or seizure of their property. An EAW can only be issued for offences carrying a minimum penalty of one year or more in prison. In the case that the sentence has been passed, the prison term to be enforced has to be at least four months.

Eurojust facilitates the use of the EAW as part of its work to support cross-border judicial cooperation. See more information on this tool.


PUBLICATION DATE:03 December 2020
In its 2016 Petruhhin judgment, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) introduced specific obligations for Member States that do not extradite their own nationals and receive an extradition request for the prosecution of an EU citizen who is a national of another Member State and has...
PUBLICATION DATE:16 July 2020|Last update: 21 February 2022
This document is an executive summary of the compilation by Eurojust and by the European Judicial Network (EJN) of information received by Eurojust, by the EJN and by the Presidency/General Secretariat of the Council, on the impact of the measures taken by governments to combat the spread of COVID...
PUBLICATION DATE:01 October 2019
Article 16 of the Council Framework Decision on the European arrest warrant and the surrender procedure between Member States (EAW FD, 2002/584/JHA) regulates the decision-making process for the competent authority of the executing Member State that receives multiple requests for surrender/...