As discussed in the last post, here, INTERPOL’s new rules governing the CCF took effect in March. From a practitioner’s standpoint, among the more significant changes is the CCF’s new task of publishing its opinions and providing reasoning for them.

The CCF is now required to “endeavour to make its decisions, opinions, recommendations and
reports public in all working languages of the Organization.”

This language of the statute is devoid of hard deadlines or methods of publication- there are no assurances that the CCF’s decisions will be published monthly, quarterly, yearly, etc. In fact, there is not the requirement that the CCF actually publishes an opinion- simply that it must endeavor to do so.

However, the publication provision in the statute is still good news. This marks the first time that the CCF has obliged itself to even contemplate creating a public repository of opinions, and that would be a very useful thing for both the CCF and practitioners for a couple of reasons:

  • Published decisions allow practicioners to better understand the CCF’s analytical process and the weight that the CCF gives to various types of arguments. ¬†Until now, we have been limited to reviewing our own cases or the relatively few media cases to gain insight as to the CCF’s deliberative process.
  • Published decisions allow the CCF to receive better prepared requests for relief. An informed practitioner is an effective practitioner.

Now, we wait to see how and when this new practice will take effect.

Next time: new rule on the how quickly an attorney must act on the discovery of new information in an applicant’s case.

As always, thoughts and comments are welcomed.

As we discussed in the last post, INTERPOL’s new rules are called the Rules on the Processing of Data (RPD) and will become effective July 1, 2012.  Among the changes from the old rules, and of interest to Red Notice subjects and their attorneys, will be the following:

  • Better organization of topics in a more streamlined layout
  • Additional responsibilities (and repurcussions for failing to observe those responsibilites) for the National Central Bureaus (NCB’s).
  • More clearly delineated distance between the roles and functions of NCB’s and INTERPOL.

Obviously, ease of reading the rules is particularly important when navigating INTERPOL.  That change doesn’t require much more discussion as far as how it will affect attorneys.  Suffice to say that a more intuitive approach to setting forth the rules makes for a more organized approach to preparing every case.

The changes regarding the NCB’s are significant.  The RPD create enhanced responsibilities to which the NCB’s must adhere regarding employee training, observation of country-specific legal requirements, and data protection and entry.  Where NCB’s embrace the new rules, there will be little room for complaint.  However, where the rules are violated, challenges will likely include those violations as grounds for relief.  NCB’s have ample reason to carefully review the new rules:  violation of the rules carries penalties such as re-training, supervision, and finally, suspension from accessing INTERPOL’s tools.

One of the rule changes will have an effect that is more difficult to predict:  built into the new rules is an obvious effort to create distance between the NCB’s and INTERPOL.  It’s no secret that INTERPOL intends to maintain its status as an international organization generally not subject to lawsuits in member country courts.  As INTERPOL’s reach expands and more people suffer the effects of improperly issued Red Notices, the drumbeat to hold INTERPOL accountable for aiding improperly acting member countries grows louder.  The new rules are absolutely meant to hold that movement at bay.  Whether it succeeds or not, only time will tell.  

 

 

In the last post, the focus was on INTERPOL’s consciousness of its potential vulnerability to legal action based on improperly issued Red Notices.  INTERPOL’s I-Link system, which allows member countries much more broad discretion in the issuance of Red Notices, has allowed for information to be processed using INTERPOL’s databases in a way that was impossible prior to the I-Link system being implemented.

As INTERPOL has become aware of the dangers associated with member countries’ increased autonomy, it has taken steps to guard against improper processing of individuals’ information. Beginning in July of this year, INTERPOL’s new rules regarding the processing of data will become effective.  The new rules obviously retain and incorporate many of the existing rules, but there are also new provisions designed to hold individual National Central Bureaus (NCBs) accountable for their actions.

If the new rules are effectively enforced, wayward NCBs will be restricted in their ability to behave in a corrupt or careless fashion.  With 190 member countries, there will always be difficulties in terms of the proper use of INTERPOL’s tools, and member participation will never be perfect or flawless.  INTERPOL’s willingness to acknowledge and address the problems that have arisen from the misuse of its tools, however, is a step in the right direction.

As always, comments and questions are welcome.