USAID Supports Specialization of Judges and Best Practice Exchange in the Adjudication of Financial Crimes and Corruption

USAID Supports Specialization of Judges and Best Practice Exchange in the Adjudication of Financial Crimes and Corruption

March 29, 2019

In order to meet Chapter 23 negotiation requirements for EU accession process related to combating corruption, Serbia passed the 2016 Law on the Organization and Jurisdiction of State Organs in the Suppression of Organized Crime, Terrorism Financing and Corruption that established specialized anti-corruption court units. This Law came into force in March 2018.

Following the first year of implementation of the Law, judges in the new anti-corruption units are working to develop specialization for adjudication of financial crimes and corruption cases, including consideration of legal and procedural issues.

On March 29, 2019, USAID’s Government Accountability Initiative (GAI) convened a roundtable in co-operation with Serbia’s Supreme Court of Cassation and Judicial Academy of more than 50 judges from all levels of jurisdiction, including the four specialized anti-corruption units of Higher Courts in Belgrade, Novi Sad, Niš and Kraljevo, four Courts of Appeals, and the Supreme Court of Cassation.

To increase opportunities for exchange and knowledge sharing with Serbia’s anti-corruption court judges, GAI engaged Judge Pamela Zelinska from the Slovakian Special Criminal Court, Judge Andrei Claudiu Rus from the Romanian High Court of Cassation, Justice Ana Garacic from the Supreme Court of Croatia, and Judge Veljko Miskulin, President of Court of Appeals in Rijeka, Croatia, to introduce best practices in the adjudication of financial crimes and corruption.

Participants discussed the legality of evidence and use of circumstantial evidence in cases of financial crimes and corruption, new means of proof such as reports of financial forensic experts, determination of illegal material gain, and asset seizure and confiscation in corruption cases.

President of the Supreme Court of Cassation, Dragomir Milojevic, provided the keynote speech at the opening of the event and encouraged judges to develop specialization for adjudication of financial crimes and corruption cases.

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