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Online Workshop on effective management of seized and confiscated criminal assets

Between 6 – 20 October 2020, The Balkan Asset Management Interagency Network (BAMIN) delivered three online workshops on the challenges of and best practice in the management of moveable assets, for over 50 prosecution authority representatives , law enforcement officers and asset managers from different jurisdictions.

The interactive workshops, conducted over an online platform, involved the engagement of participants from 14 BAMIN member jurisdictions, as well as Georgia, Greece, Italy and the Netherlands. The workshops focused on a mock case and the asset management issues that arise during investigation, search and seizure, storage and sale of criminal assets.

The BAMIN Secretariat has adopted a strategy for involving investigators and prosecutors from different jurisdictions to role-play as asset management officers in order for them to gain an understanding of the limitations that Asset Management Officers face throughout the seizure and confiscations of assets.

There was a strong focus on the necessary interaction with prosecutors and law enforcement throughout the investigation and prosecution. The workshops enhanced regional co-operation and facilitated the exchange of good practice among national agencies.

Furthermore, the workshop highlighted legal limitations in certain jurisdictions that impede asset managers in performing their tasks properly and efficiently. It showed the importance of involving asset management offices (AMOs) from the start during the pre-seizure phase, as well as throughout the long-term management of assets and finally their sale.

Prosecutors and law enforcement recognised the crucial role asset management plays in assets recovery and confirmed importance of continuous collaboration with AMOs in the process. Interactive online workshops, organized within the project “Strengthening the fight against transnational crime in South-Eastern Europe through improved regional co-operation in asset seizure, confiscation, management and re-use” supported by the OSCE, proved an effective way to promote good practice and establish regional cooperation.