Research Handbook on EU Criminal Law
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Research Handbook on EU Criminal Law

Edited by Valsamis Mitsilegas, Maria Bergström and Theodore Konstadinides

EU criminal law is one of the fastest evolving, but also challenging, policy areas and fields of law. This Handbook provides a comprehensive and advanced analysis of EU criminal law as a structurally and constitutionally unique policy area and field of research. With contributions from leading experts, focusing on their respective fields of research, the book is preoccupied with defining cross-border or ‘Euro-crimes’, while allowing Member States to sanction criminal behaviour through mutual cooperation. It contains a web of institutions, agencies, and external liaisons, which ensure the protection of EU citizens from serious crime, while protecting the fundamental rights of suspects and criminals.
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Chapter 6: Fundamental rights, national identity and EU criminal law

Alexandros Kargopoulos


The unprecedented growth of EU criminal law over the last years has coincided with the development of fundamental rights. Citizens of Member States enjoy the protection of civil rights and liberties, which stem from a plurality of sources, namely the Charter of Fundamental Rights, the ECHR and national Constitutions. The purpose of this chapter is to provide a balanced account of the main considerations and criticisms relating to fundamental rights issues that arise from the application of EU criminal law, with a special emphasis on the jurisprudence of the CJEU and the normative implications of the Charter of Fundamental Rights to fundamental rights as guaranteed by national constitutions. Focal points of the analysis of this chapter include the normative relationship of international human rights instruments and national constitutions with the Charter, the interpretive approach of the CJEU to the Charter and its relationship with national constitutions in the context of criminal matters and a discourse on the concept of national identity and its possible usage in the field of EU criminal law.

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