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OSCE: International Co-operation Can Improve Asset Recovery

Overall, the study finds that international and European standards have been to a large extent transposed into the national legislation of Bulgaria, Croatia, Moldova and Romania, with the systems found in Croatia and Romania being more developed than those found in Bulgaria, and Moldova in particular. However, several implementation aspects of these standards at the operational level remain weak. The conclusions stemming from this study will serve as a basis for future actions to strengthen human resources, the investigative and enforcement capacities of competent authorities in relation to the asset recovery process. As such, steps should be taken to strengthen these national asset recovery processes; ensuring a more coherent and consistent application of national laws and practice; and raising the efficiency and effectiveness of seizure and confiscation proceedings relating to the proceeds and instrumentalities of crime.

The study concludes that one of the key obstacles to the implementation of seizure and confiscation measures is insufficient capacities to effectively utilise different tools available within the asset recovery process. Based on publicly available information, with the exception of Croatia, it has generally not been possible to establish and utilise an adequate level of international co-operation in Bulgaria, Moldova and Romania. The trend seems to indicate an insufficient use of international co-operation mechanisms in relation to cases dealing with asset recovery.