ERA: European Criminal Law for Defence Lawyers

The training of defence lawyers with special regard to European criminal law has gained more and more importance over the years. This is not only due to the rising number of measures regarding European instruments of mutual recognition and cooperation in criminal matters like the EAW and the EIO, but also to those instruments being applied in a common manner, which, in turn, is resulting in rising numbers of cases in which such instruments are part of the proceedings.

Hence, this project sets out:

  • To train ca. 500 defence lawyers from all over the EU by organising 15 interactive and practical legal training activities on EU criminal law matters
  • To raise awareness of European criminal law amongst defence lawyers in the EU, leading to better application of EU criminal law and a better understanding of national differences
  • To enhance mutual trust through providing networking opportunities for defence lawyers
  • To provide a platform for discussion on the need for further EU measures in the area of criminal law.

For all information please visit Project's website or click here to download brochure.


The project

The Academy of European Law (ERA), together with four beneficiaries, namely the Barcelona Bar Association, the Budapest Bar Association, the Latvian Collegium of Sworn Advocates, and the Lithuanian Bar Association, as well as four associated partners, namely the Croatian Bar Association, the Portuguese Bar Association, the Lithuanian Ministry of Justice and the European Criminal Bar Association, has secured co-funding for a two-year project specifically designed for lawyers in private practice dealing with criminal cases.

The project comprises six face-to-face seminars across the EU providing training on different issues such as procedural rights, current developments in criminal proceedings (e.g. digitalisation), and milestones of European criminal justice such as the EAW, alongside six afternoon webinars providing an overview on how to combat key crimes in the EU. Two further events, a face-to-face seminar on the case law of the CJEU in criminal matters and its preliminary ruling procedure, as well as a seminar on the difference in the application of the right to legal privilege in criminal matters in the EU Member States, will complete the training offer. In addition, selected recordings of the webinars as well as an introductory e-learning course will be made publicly available.

As a result, this project will contribute to raising awareness on European criminal law amongst defence lawyers in the EU and allow for a better application of EU criminal law. A better understanding of national differences, enhanced mutual trust, and higher standards for procedural rights in the EU will be only some of the effects. Finally, the project will give various networking opportunities providing a platform for discussion on the need for further EU measures in the area of criminal law and for meeting colleagues from other EU Member States, which will foster mutual understanding and hence the creation of a European judicial culture.

The project is set to run for 24 months starting on 1 January 2024, with a total of 15 interactive, practice-oriented activities implemented within this time-frame.

Last updated: 11-04-2024