At a glance

The Council of Europe Convention on Laundering, Search, Seizure and Confiscation of the Proceeds from Crime and on the Financing of Terrorism (CETS No. 198, the Criminal asset Recovery Convention), which entered into force on 1 May 2008, is the first comprehensive international treaty covering both the prevention and the control of money laundering and the financing of terrorism. It is a key convention of the Council of Europe, which reinforces current global standards by setting, inter alia, specific requirements with respect to preventative money laundering and terrorism financing regimes, freezing, seizure and confiscation measures, the management of frozen and seized property,  asset sharing between Parties,  financial intelligence units,  international co-operation and other aspects. The Convention addresses the fact that quick access to financial information on assets held by criminal organisations, including terrorist groups, is the key to successful preventive and repressive measures, and ultimately it is the best way to stop them.

The Convention established a mechanism to ensure the proper implementation by the Parties of its provisions through a Conference of Parties. Its monitoring procedure complements the work of the relevant bodies which monitor the implementation of the Financial Action Task Force  (FATF) standards, namely the Council of Europe Committee of Experts on the Evaluation of Anti-Money Laundering Measures and the Financing of Terrorism (MONEYVAL) and the FATF. The action of the Conference of the Parties is central to the fight against organised crime and contributes to the Council of Europe’s action against corruption, human trafficking, cybercrime and economic crime in general.