Formation and development of the normative function of the EU criminal law policy
The history of the criminal law policy of the European Union allows us to state that the criminal law of the European Union will not in any way reflect a certain national criminal law in the foreseeable future. The types of offenses that form the backbone of the national criminal justice system, namely general crimes against persons, crimes against property such as theft, fraud or destruction of property, as well as misdemeanors against public order, etc., are unlikely to be harmonized at EU level in the near future. future. However, the subjective and institutional powers that allow Member States to cooperate in the field of investigation, prosecution and execution of sentences, at the same time indicate the possibility of cooperation on these types of crime in the framework of criminal procedure or criminal enforcement policy.
Instead, there are three key types of problems that have led to the implementation of EU criminal policy measures or to the approximation of substantive criminal law.
First of all, it concerns the protection of the primary (general) interests of the European Union, which would obviously find it difficult to act effectively if, for example, fraud against its interests were not subject to criminal law protection. In addition, for example, counterfeiting currency (Euro) also harms an area of common interest at EU level.
The second group of measures concerns cross-border crime. Although sometimes cross-border criminal offenses are not related to the primary interests of the European Union, they still address issues where the consequences of such offenses are cross-border in nature and therefore affect the interests of both individual states and the European Union as a whole. . In addition, the method of committing criminal offenses, as a rule, may include cross-border activities. If such activities are not prosecuted under criminal law policy in all Member States' legal systems, this may affect the possibility of reducing effective investigations and prosecutions. In particular, the release of pollutants inevitably entails transboundary consequences; money laundering usually initiates related transactions, crossing the borders of several states.
The third category can be defined as criminal offenses with high publicity factors (they often contain cross-border elements). Obviously, they also affect the legitimate interests of the European Union, which must be protected by criminal law efforts. However, they have another distinctive feature: they significantly affect the security of the entire European Union. An example of such acts is, in particular, terrorism.