Collection of Electronic Evidence from Internet Service Providers - 2nd edition of UNODC's Practical Guide

10-11 October 2022, Belgrade, Serbia: UNODC Global Firearms Programme (GFP) in cooperation with UNODC Terrorism Prevention Branch (TPB), held a regional meeting to present the 2nd edition of the UNODC’s Practical Guide for Requesting E-evidence Across Borders (Practical Guide), with the aim to facilitate exchange among criminal justice practitioners on the topic and to identify their needs for successful acquiring, handling and presenting the e-evidence in criminal proceedings.

The two-day meeting gathered 45 representatives of prosecution services and law enforcement agencies from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, and Serbia.

During 2022, UNODC developed a comprehensive training curriculum around the 1st edition of the Practical Guide and delivered six trainings in the Western Balkans. Accordingly, the event presented an excellent opportunity for the criminal justice practitioners to reflect on the newly acquired skills, current practices and challenges in acquiring e-evidence.

The UNODC experts presented the recently published 2nd edition of the Practical Guide and updated the criminal justice practitioners on its scope and added value while amended model forms and relevant contacts of additional service providers were also considered. The theme of e-evidence was further discussed in terms of enhancing law enforcement cooperation, delays in the provision of mutual legal assistance, non-cooperative service providers, contesting the admissibility of e-evidence, adherence to fundamental human rights, and the issues related to the dark web and cryptocurrencies. The participants also learned about the various tools that UNODC has developed to support the collection of e-evidence.

The meeting provided an opportunity to conduct a needs assessment and identify the priorities of each jurisdiction, which will serve as a basis for developing future activities. The 2nd edition of the Practical Guide was distributed to the meeting participants and will be used as training tool in the upcoming period.

This activity was implemented with financial support provided by Germany, the United Kingdom, Sweden, France, the Netherlands, and Norway through the Western Balkans SALW Control Roadmap Trust Fund and supported by the European Union.