Eurojust supports Operation Top Secret spy case: successful Portuguese-Italian cross-border cooperation

MIL OSI – Source: European Union –

Headline: Eurojust supports Operation Top Secret spy case: successful Portuguese-Italian cross-border cooperation

​The Hague, 24 May 2016

This past weekend, two arrests and seizure of evidence took place in Rome, with the close cooperation of Portuguese and Italian authorities. The case related to a Portuguese national and a Russian national suspected of being paid to transfer confidential information to a foreign intelligence service.

This action was part of a case investigated by the Portuguese Central Criminal Investigation and Penal Action Department (DCIAP) responsible for investigating the crimes of espionage, violation of state secrecy, corruption and money laundering. For this purpose, two European Arrest Warrants (EAWs) and a rogatory letter were issued. In addition to the two arrests and the seizure of evidence, house searches were carried out in Portugal.

The Portuguese and Italian judicial authorities have emphasized the crucial role played by Eurojust in ensuring the speed and accuracy of legal proceedings and admissibility of evidence in court.

The two suspects were arrested and put in custody following the execution of the two EAWs and brought before the competent Italian judicial authorities.

In these investigations, which by their nature are secret, the prosecution is assisted by the Portuguese National Unit for Combating Terrorism of the Judicial Police, whose researchers went to Italy to assist in compliance with the rogatory letter issued by DCIAP.

The Portuguese and Italian National Members of Eurojust remarked:

Espionage cases are relatively rare, and require unique solutions. Eurojust’s Portuguese and Italian National Desks played a vital role in the successful outcome of this case. Working seamlessly together with the national authorities, two EAWs were rapidly executed, and legal proceedings and the collection of admissible evidence were assured.

For questions relating to the involvement of Member States, please contact the relevant national authorities.

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