Peter McCORMICK (President of the CCPE since January 2017, Member of the Bureau since January 2015, Ireland)

It is a great honour and privilege  to have been re-elected President of the Consultative Council of European Prosecutors (CCPE) at the Plenary meeting which took place in November 2017. I am very appreciative of the great support and confidence expressed in me by the Plenary members. 

The CCPE has now firmly established its position within the Council of Europe and Recommendation (2000)19 on the role of the public prosecution in the criminal justice system remains the benchmark for all Council of Europe member states. 

The 12 adopted Opinions of the CCPE and Recommendation 2000(19)  are the relevant international standards that serve as clear reference points for public prosecution services. They reflect the considerable diversity of many different legal systems in Europe, and provide clear guidance and persuasive authority as to how Prosecutors should go about their work.

In 2017 the CCPE prepared an Opinion focusing on “the role of prosecutors in relation to the rights of victims and witnesses in criminal proceedings”. It  was adopted at the CCPE Plenary meeting in November 2017 in Strasbourg and recommended the implementation, in all member states, of a series of rights and protective measures for victims and witnesses.

The task of the CCPE remains important. The Report on the independence and impartiality of the prosecution services in the Council of Europe member  states, which has been adopted by the Bureau of the CCPE, highlights a certain amount of concerns and challenges in relation to the functioning of prosecution services, and shows that there are still issues arising in some member states in terms of independence, autonomy and accountability of prosecutors. The CCPE continues to confront these challenges and promote its values.

During 2018 our primary task is to formulate an Opinion focusing on “independence, accountability and ethics of prosecutors”. The aim of the Opinion will be to promote public confidence in the prosecution system and balance the need for independence with transparency, accountability, clear lines of authority and high ethical standards.

The Bureau and the Working Party have already prepared the draft structure and main issues for the Opinion, which will be further developed throughout the year with a view to its adoption at the CCPE Plenary in November.

 

Peter McCormick
President
Consultative Council of European Prosecutors (CCPE)
Council of Europe
March 2018

Peter McCORMICK (Ireland)