INTERPOL’s CCF (the Commission for the Control of INTERPOL’s Files) has begun issuing its decisions from the most recent session.

The most recent session was held from 28 June through 2 July, and we began receiving decisions last week. The new decisions show:

  • The CCF is continuing to thoroughly examine the claims in the Red Notice removal requests that it receives. The decisions reflect an understanding of the claims made and an analysis of the evidence presented.
  • The Commission is also demanding substantive responses from the NCBs involved in the cases. Where the NCB’s response consists of mere assurances that proper procedure was followed, the Commission is not satisfied.
  • In cases where political motivation is alleged, the CCF continues to demonstrate reluctance to decide a request based solely on that argument. Instead, it makes a full analysis of all arguments presented and issues a decision based on the totality of the circumstances. The decision may or may not make an express finding regarding the political motivation issue.
  • On the other hand, where a decision can be issued based on a single argument other than political motivation, the Commission is making the decision on that basis and declining to analyze the remaining arguments.

The approach described in the last two points above is similar to the doctrine of constitutional avoidance, wherein U.S. courts avoid interpreting the Constitution as a means of also avoiding controversial or sensitive issues unless absolutely necessary. When the CCF can properly dispose of a disputed case without avoid calling into question the political motivation of one of its member countries, it appears to be doing so. In some cases, however, the political nature of a case is such that it must be addressed or other grounds for removal do not exist or are unclear. In those situations, the CCF is calling balls and strikes as needed.

As always, thoughts and comments are welcomed.