Piracy and International Maritime Crimes in ASEAN

Piracy and International Maritime Crimes in ASEAN

Prospects for Cooperation

NUS Centre for International Law series

Edited by Robert Beckman and J. Ashley Roach

Southeast Asian waters are critical for international trade and the global economy. Combating maritime crimes has always been a priority as well as a challenge for ASEAN member states. While much emphasis has been placed on enhancing operational cooperation against maritime crimes, the need for an effective legal framework to combat such maritime crimes has not been sufficiently examined. This book demonstrates that ASEAN member states can establish a legal framework to combat maritime crimes by ratifying and effectively implementing relevant global and regional conventions. It also explores the issues that ASEAN member states, and ASEAN as an organization, face in establishing such a framework and suggests suitable steps that can be taken to address such issues.

Chapter 8: Maritime crimes and the problem of cross- border enforcement: making the most of existing multilateral instruments

Ling Cheah Wui

Subjects: law - academic, criminal law and justice, maritime law


This chapter undertakes a comparative and critical analysis of the enforcement regimes put in place by the multilateral treaties considered in this book. First, it examines the enforcement arrangements set out in instruments of a general nature, namely, the 2004 Treaty on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters (2004 MLAT) and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). It then evaluates the enforcement frameworks established by crime specific treaties: the 1979 International Convention against the Taking of Hostages (1979 Hostages Convention), the 1999 International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism (1999 Financing of Terrorism Convention), the 2007 ASEAN Convention on Counter Terrorism (2007 ACCT), the 1988 Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Maritime Navigation (1988 SUA Convention), the 2005 Protocol to the Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Maritime Navigation (2005 SUA Protocol), and the 2000 United Nations Convention on Transnational Organized Crime (2000 UNTOC). In conducting a comparative analysis of these instruments, their distinctive features and their respective strengths are highlighted. In particular, how these instruments regulate the exercise of jurisdiction by states and the inter-state cooperation process is explained. Finally, this chapter draws attention to how the effectiveness of these instruments may be further maximized by appreciating their interactive relationship and their underlying principles of governance.

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