Chapter 4: Criminal law enforcement of EU law and the impact of Europeanization
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Criminal law ranks among the most potent enforcement instruments of the EU. Despite its prominence, EU bodies and academia tend to be oblivious of its foundations and implications. This chapter analyses the concept, functioning and manifestations of criminal law as an enforcement instrument of EU law. It anchors criminal law in the enforcement architecture of the EU and explains how criminal law may strengthen compliance with EU law. While the chapter confirms numerous added values of criminal law enforcement it also sheds light on future questions and points of attention for researchers and practitioners. Most importantly, assessments suffer from a lack of statistical data and serious analytic shortcomings that researchers and policy-makers need to confront in the future to increase the effectiveness and legitimacy of criminal law enforcement.

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