Vertical and horizontal cooperation in combatting organized fraud in the EU (VeHoCoinCOF)


This project was funded by the European Union’s HERCULE III programme under the grant agreement No 101015417.
Hercule III Programme, Legal Training and Studies 2020 (HERCULE-2020-LT-AG).


The aim of the project is to investigate the legal and practical aspects of cooperation against organized fraud, especially harmful to the EU budget and the Member States. The project will focus on six EU Member States – four on the EU’s eastern border (Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, Romania, Germany and Italy). The project will examine the legal framework and practical challenges related to the cooperation of the relevant national law enforcement authorities with the four EU institutions: EPPO, OLAF, Europol and Eurojust, as well as the cooperation of these national institutions with their counterparts in other EU Member States and non-EU countries in the context of combating financial crimes. The project will be implemented by a team of INP PAN researchers in Poland and national experts from five other countries. The results will be presented in a book published in English as Open Access and during final conference.

In accordance with the project’s premise, the contractors (national experts) prepared a joint questionnaire, and then, on the basis of this questionnaire, prepared a report on national legislation relating to the protection of the European Union’s financial interests and the basis for cooperation between member states, bodies and institutions in this regard.

The preparation of the report was preceded by a literature search and interviews conducted with representatives of law enforcement agencies and secret services. The culmination of the research was the organization of an international conference, at which contractors (national experts) delivered papers presenting the results of the research.

The conference was attended not only by the contractors of the project, but also by a representative of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office and a representative of OLAF – they prepared a presentation in which they presented the issue of protecting the financial interests of the European Union from the perspective of the represented body. Representatives of law enforcement agencies and special services (prosecutors’ offices, the Central Anti-Corruption Bureau, the Internal Security Agency), the Ministry of Finance, as well as lawyers or scientists dealing with the issue of protecting the financial interests of the European Union were invited to the conference.

The next step was to refer the monograph to the international prestigious publishing house Routledge and accept it for publication.

Conducting interviews with representatives of law enforcement agencies and secret services, the presentation of papers at an international conference (presentation of research results) and the preparation of a monograph meet the following expectations: (i) raising awareness on the need to improve cooperation between EU institutions and national law enforcement authorities, (ii) addressing challenges related to this cooperation indicated by national law enforcement officials, (iii) disseminating knowledge on the evolving EU institutional framework in combatting PIF offences, as well as presenting to the specialized public, including practicing lawyers, judges, academics, law enforcement officers, prosecutors, the issue of the vertical and horizontal cooperation of law enforcement institutions within the EU, especially in the PIF area; exchange of experiences between professionals dealing with or interested in this issue in order to improve their work; exchange of experiences between European and national officials dealing with or interested in this issue in order to improve their cooperation; raising awareness on the new developments of the EU law in the field of the European criminal law; among the practitioners and the general public, especially with the view of the establishment of the EPPO; identifying best practices that could contribute to a more effective cooperation between European institutions and national law enforcement institution in combatting PIF offences, in particular organised fraud. The main tasks of the project have been fulfilled (an international conference presenting the results of the comparative legal research and an edited monograph published internationally in English, in Open Access form, including 6 reports on national legal framework and practical challenges related to institutional cooperation in combatting organised EU fraud, and at least one report on the EU institutional framework after changes related to the establishment of the EPPO). The following documents were collected in connection with the organization of the international conference: (i) a list of attendance signed by the participants (PDF file); (ii) the event-evaluation forms completed by the participants at the end of the event (PDF file); (iii) the event-feedback form containing the summary of scores resulting from the above evaluation-forms completed by the participants.

Our Team members:

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The content of this conference represents the views of the author only and is his/her sole responsibility. The European Commission does not accept any responsibility for use that may be made of the information it contains.

The monograph will be published in Open Access at the end of 2023 by Routledge (Taylor&Francis Group).