Judicial practitioners from across Europe gathered at Eurojust, the EU’s Judicial Cooperation Unit, for the 6th European Judicial Cybercrime Network (EJCN) plenary meeting, to strengthen the fight against ever-evolving threats posed by cybercrime.

The EJCN provides a cross-border platform to exchange national experience and best practice, get inspiration from other legal systems, discuss real case examples, and find practical solutions in countering cybercrime. It explores the boundaries of the existing legal frameworks in the Member States and works to best interpret these systems to step up the investigation and prosecution of cybercriminals and produce evidence that can hold up in court.

As legal frameworks develop slowly, they are often not in line with the rapidly changing digital technologies that are exploited by criminals. Legal systems were initially created for real-world crimes, and, therefore, provide a limited and often outdated legal basis to tackle cybercrime (virtual-world crime). The EJCN helps to find a way forward, considering the lack of a solid and updated legal basis, by comparing different jurisdictions and extracting successful national case law to be applied in similar cases in other Member States.

The 6th EJCN plenary meeting (4-5 April) was attended by members of the Eurojust Cybercrime Team, as well as other key representatives from Eurojust, Europol, the Council, the Commission, and the European Judicial Network (EJN). The main topics of the 6th EJCN plenary meeting were the direct transborder access to digital evidence and takedown of domains used for criminal purposes. The second day’s discussions centred on investigating darknet criminality and the handling of virtual currencies in criminal procedures.