‘Treaty on criminal matters to enhance coop’

Last Updated: Tuesday, March 13, 2012 - 14:59

Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia on Tuesday said a landmark
treaty signed with India on mutual assistance in criminal
matters showed their strong commitment to combat the menace of
transnational crime through international cooperation.

The historic treaty, signed yesterday after four
years of negotiations, has been viewed as timely in the wake
of escalation in transnational organised crime like drug
trafficking, smuggling of migrants, trafficking in persons and
terrorism.

Sanjay Singh, Secretary (East) Ministry of External
Affairs, on behalf of India and Abdul Gani Patail, Attorney
General of Malaysia, signed the treaty on Mutual Assistance in
Criminal Matters.

The Attorney General`s Chambers described the signing of
the treaty as the highest commitment by both governments at
preventing and combating transnational criminal activities
through international cooperation between their respective law
enforcement authorities.

"The treaty between Malaysia and India is intended
to facilitate this process between the two countries by
putting in place a formal bilateral mechanism for the
gathering of relevant evidence in each other`s countries for
the purpose of criminal investigations and criminal
proceedings in their respective countries without affecting
the existing informal mechanism," A-G`s office here said in a
statement.

Under the treaty, Malaysia and India will provide
the widest measure of mutual assistance in connection with
investigations and proceedings pertaining to criminal matters.

The treaty features a broad range of assistance,
including the taking of evidence by way of judicial process,
the taking of voluntary statements of persons, the provision
of relevant documents, records and items.

This also includes making arrangements for a person to
assist in an investigation or appear as witness, executing
search and seizure, effecting service of documents,
identifying, tracing and recovery of proceeds of crime and
property and instrumentalities derived from or used in the
commission of an offence and any other form of an assistance
not prohibited by the laws of the requested state.

"Thus, in addition to the existing agency-to-agency
informal cooperation mechanisms, this treaty will facilitate
the gathering of evidence and the recovery and repatriation of
proceeds of crime where compulsive measures as court orders
are generally required under the laws of the requested state,"
the Malaysian statement said.

It added that the request for mutual assistance in
criminal matters would be transmitted and executed by the
respective central authorities of the two countries.

PTI




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