In June of this year, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a fundamental amendment to Directive 2008/99/EC concerning environmental protection through criminal law. In order to improve the effectiveness of the investigation and prosecution of criminal offenses in all EU member states, the draft of the new directive sets six main objectives:
- clarify terms used in definitions of environmental crimes that leave too much room for interpretation;
- update the directive by including new branches of environmental crime within its scope;
- ensure more effective, dissuasive and proportionate sanctions by defining the types and levels of sanctions for environmental crimes;
- support cross-border investigations and prosecutions;
- improve informed decision-making on environmental crimes through better collection and dissemination of statistical data according to common standards in all Member States;
- improve the effectiveness of national enforcement chains.
The European Parliament has reviewed this proposal based on the assessment of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs and the Committee on Legal Affairs and has currently issued a comprehensive opinion on the submitted proposal. In this opinion, the proposal fundamentally clarifies and expands its application in the interest of more effective prevention and stronger punishment of this type of crime on a national scale as well as on the scale of the entire European Union.
More information here