In order to step up efforts in targeting effectively corruption and fraud, in particular, affecting the EU financial interests, as well as to strengthen the regional cooperation and enhancing mutual trust, the STT initiated and implemented the project “Strengthening multidisciplinary and regional approach in fighting corruption and fraud affecting EU financial interests in the Baltic region“, financed under Hercule III Programme. The project consisted of two following international seminars:
This EU financed project has significantly contributed to strengthening the multidisciplinary approach to combatting fraud and corruption, in particular, affecting the financial interests of the EU, as well as regional cooperation between the responsible institutions of Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Poland.
The main objectives of this Project were:
In order to ensure not only regional, but also multidisciplinary approaches to the topic, the Project involved more than 100 representatives of pre-trial investigation, prosecution, prevention and administrative institutions of various levels from Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Poland.
The total value of the project is 58,464.88 Eur. Project duration - 15 months.
On the 14-15th of September 2022, Vilnius, Lithuania, more than 60 participants, representatives of the region's anti-corruption and anti-fraud institutions, prosecutor's office, tax authorities, financial intelligence units (FIU), anti-fraud coordination services (AFCOs), both experts and heads of institutions and departments, from Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, and Poland took part in the international workshop "Multidisciplinary approach and regional cooperation in tackling corruption and fraud risks affecting EU financial interests" (hereinafter – workshop) organized by the Special Investigation Service of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter – STT).
The workshop was initially planned in 2020-2021, but due to COVID-19 pandemic project activities were postponed.
During this event, the representatives of institutions presented their latest developments and activities and shared their experience and best practices of the law enforcement and other institutions of the Baltic region. Participants addressed the benefits and importance of the prevention, data analysis, proactive and retroactive investigations of corruption, fraud and other illegal activities, as well as discussed what measures should be used to fight effectively against fraud and corruption, affecting EU financial interests. In order to successfully combat, participants discussed the risks of corruption and fraud, opportunities and challenges, including combining preventive, analytical and crime investigation tools. Best practices in detecting, investigating and preventing cases of corruption and fraud, including affecting the EU financial interests, were presented.
The workshop consisted of 4 different sessions. During them representatives from various institutions participated in 4 round table discussions, exchanged valuable information about activities in the fight against fraud and corruption, in particular, affecting EU financial interests, challenges and solutions in obtaining and using data analytics for the purposes of prevention, detection and investigation of fraud and corruption affecting EU financial interests. The workshop was concluded with the high-level panel discussion “What needs to be done to step up action for better protection of the EU financial interests?”.
First Panel discussion
On February 22-23rd, 2023, the second workshop of the EU financed project "Multidisciplinary approach and regional cooperation in combatting corruption and fraud affecting EU financial interests" was held in Vilnius (Lithuania). More than 70 participants from law enforcement and other institutions from Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Poland shared their experience in detecting and investigating criminal acts of a corrupt nature, in using big data analysis, in applying prevention measures, in creating and strengthening the anti-corruption environment in their respective countries.
Project participants – senior officials and experts of Lithuanian, Polish, Latvian and Estonian institutions working in the field of anti-corruption and fraud - presented their experience and proven solutions in preventing corruption and fraud affecting the financial interests of the EU. The participants heard various presentations, participated in round table discussions, and discussed cases in separate sessions on prevention, investigation and analytics. In the leaders' session, the heads of the anti-corruption institutions of Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Poland examined the latest trends and challenges of detecting and investigation serious corruption cases, in particular, affecting EU financial interests, and agreed on further closer cooperation in this area.
The two day follow-up workshop consisted of 3 different sessions. The first joint session consisted of 7 presentations of representatives from European Public Prosecutor’s Office; Guardia di Finanza of Italy; European Investment Bank; Financial Crimes Investigation Service of the Republic of Lithuania; Corruption Crime Bureau, Police and Border Guard Board, National Criminal Police, Estonia; Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau, Latvia; and Central Anti-Corruption Bureau, Poland. During the parallel sessions representatives from various institutions participated in 4 different round table discussions, exchanged information about activities in tackling corruption and fraud risks affecting EU financial interests. The parallel sessions consisted of 4 sessions divided into two parts – presentation of recent cases and round table discussion –Session of Leaders, Session of the Criminal Intelligence, Criminal Investigation and Prosecution units, Session of the Analytical Units and Session of the Prevention Units.
The second day of the follow-up workshop consisted of the joint concluding session and the high-level panel discussion “Short-term and long-term priorities for strengthening regional cooperation and multidisciplinary approach in combating fraud and corruption, in particular, affecting EU financial interests”.
Second Panel discussion
STT, after completing the EU-financed project "Multidisciplinary approach and regional cooperation in combatting corruption and fraud affecting EU financial interests", launched a publication that provides a structured overview of two international seminars. Publication you can find here.