On 12 September 2023, 27 judges from different regions of Ukraine, as well as representatives of the National School of Judges of Ukraine, took part in the launch of in-depth training within the HELP course "International Cooperation in Criminal Matters". The training will last for 11 weeks and is organised by the Council of Europe Project "HELP (Human Rights Education for Legal Professionals) for Ukraine, including during wartime" in partnership with the National School of Judges of Ukraine.
The presentation of the course was held in Kyiv, at the premises of the Council of Europe Office in Ukraine with the participation of representatives of the Council of Europe Project HELP in Ukraine.
The International HELP Course "International Cooperation in Criminal Matters" has been adapted to the Ukrainian legal system and context and will be delivered by trainers Iryna Shapovalova, Judge of the Pavlohrad City District Court of Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, Judge-Trainer of the National School of Judges of Ukraine, and Elvira Lazarenko, lawyer and HELP Tutor.
The participants were welcomed by Natalia Shuklina, Deputy Rector of the National School of Judges of Ukraine, and Erlend Falch, Deputy Head of the Council of Europe Office in Ukraine. Mr. Falch noted that mechanisms and instruments of international cooperation in criminal matters are extremely important for combating transnational crime, corruption and terrorism, as well as other crimes. In order to ensure the safety of citizens, it is important for states to improve their ability to respond promptly and effectively to requests for international legal assistance based on a number of documents of European and international law.
The HELP course "International Cooperation in Criminal Proceedings and Victims Rights" covers the concepts of extradition, mutual legal assistance, transfer of sentenced persons, supervision of offenders, seizure and confiscation of proceeds of crime, toolbox with links and relevant information and organisations related to international cooperation in criminal matters, as well as assistance and recommendations for drafting and executing requests.
Within the national adaptation course, the participants deepen their knowledge of the legislation on international cooperation in criminal proceedings, study the relevant practice of the ECtHR, EU law and national judicial practice. During the course, special attention will be paid to international standards for the extradition of persons and their implementation in Ukrainian legislation, the procedural aspect of criminal proceedings for the extradition of persons who have committed a criminal offense and the powers of the investigating judge in the field of international cooperation.
The participants of the course will also work on the issues of international protection of refugees and Ukraine's cooperation with international institutions on the issues of extradition and prosecution of perpetrators, search and confiscation of property and assets obtained by criminal means.
During the event, Oleksii Gotsul, lawyer at the European Court of Human Rights, presented the issue of extradition in the practice of the ECtHR and international cooperation. Kostyantyn Zadoya, Professor at the Department of Criminal Law Policy and Criminal Law in the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, presented the problems of recognition of foreign court judgments under Ukrainian law.
Based on the results of the course and tasks developed by the tutors, the participants will receive the relevant certificates of the Council of Europe HELP Programme and the National School of Judges of Ukraine.
All participants received the publications from the Council of Europe Project “Support to the functioning of justice in the war and post-war context in Ukraine", including an overview of the ECHR case law for 2016-2021 and documents of the Consultative Council of European Judges (CCJE).