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2 Eur. Crim. L. Rev. 1 (2012)

handle is hein.journals/euclr2 and id is 1 raw text is: 



European Criminal                                            EuCLR

Law Review                                                   No. 1 2012
                                                             Volume 2
                                                             Pages 1-102



                                                               Editorial


After its first year, EuCLR issue no. I of 2012 invites its readers to look back on 2011; it
is also a good moment to address coming developments with regard to European
integration. Three topics shall be mentioned:


1. The accession of the EU to the ECHR
  With the finalisation of the Accession Agreement, a long, protracted and com-
plex procedure has come to a positive ending: The Membership Treaty between the
EU and the ECHR has been finalised. On the one hand, the primary law based on
the Treaty of Lisbon (article 6 § 2 TEU), and on the other hand Protocol No. 14 to
the ECHR (article 59 § 2 ECHR) adopted by the COE have enabled the EU to
become a Member of the ECHR.
  It should be noted that this is far more than a formal commitment to the
standards of human rights contained in the Convention: The Union has made itself
subject to the judicial competence of the ECHR. Every single citizen who con-
siders himself affected by a legal act of the Union is - after exhausting the national
remedies - entitled to lodge an individual application to the ECHR. In addition to
this, the co-respondent mechanism envisaged in the Accession Agreement could
even place the EU in the position of the defendant, if the application was originally
directed exclusively against a Member State; this is the case when the criticized
national behaviour is based on a legal act of the Union.


2. Mutual recognition
  How to protect procedural rights? After the Union adopted the principle of
mutual recognition as its method of choice for judicial cooperation in its primary
law, in 2010, seven Member States had already launched an Initiative for a Directive
regarding the European Investigation Order in criminal matters (EIO), which is
supposed to replace almost the entirety of legal cooperation in evidentiary matters.
  This development is, however, alarming as - in contrast e. g. to an arrest warrant
- gathering evidence in criminal procedure is a dynamic process, largely determin-
ing the outcome of the trial. In every Member State, detailed sets of rules are in
place for gathering evidence as well as for assessing evidence during trial, and

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