A European network against organised crime
Mafias know no limits, and they certainly do not stop at national borders, acting transnationally. Not only in drug trafficking, trafficking in counterfeit goods, money laundering, human trafficking and many other fields. State borders are of no importance; on the contrary, unfortunately, they sometimes help by providing legislative weaknesses or creating grey areas of judicial limbo.
Those who fight organised crime groups still find it difficult to act internationally and to cooperate across national borders. Operation Pollino in December 2018 was the first European investigation not limited to mutual legal assistance. But there is still much work to be done.
This has brought out more and more a clear need: also civil society has to network internationally, in order to enhance national experiences, exchange good practices, share expertise and research, develop common projects, create a mutual support system. With the input of the Italian anti-mafia association Libera, we have been working on it since 2016. In 2018 we gave a name to this initiative, and we have are continuing working together since then:
CHANCE – Civil Hub Against orgaNised Crime in Europe
is a network of European citizens and organisations that share the values of social anti-mafia, and are committed to taking forward the ideas collected in the political agenda, a document presented to the European Parliament on 3 April 2019.
The Political Agenda
The CHANCE proposal is divided into 13 complex points, which summarise the network’s common commitments. From improvements in the fight against money laundering, the protection of witnesses and journalists, the confiscation of Mafia property and its possible reuse by civil society to a change of strategy in drug trafficking and a redefinition of organised crime. The agenda also includes the call for the establishment of a “permanent forum” for systematic cooperation between civil society and the relevant European authorities. Each proposal corresponds to a concrete action or legislative initiative on a European scale.