Primary Sources

PrintPrint EmailEmail ShareShare CiteCite


Experts Group on Transnational Organized Crime (Lyon Group): 40 Recommendations

Published 1996

The Experts Group on Transnational Organized Crime (Lyon Group) released these 40 Recommendations on which were approved at the G8 summit in Lyon in 1996. The G8 states, "The recommendations update the Counter-Terrorism Experts Group 25 Measures to address new terrorist threats as well as to complement the 40 Recommendations of the G8 crime group, known as the Lyon Group (1996). The Lyon Recommendations have also been modified in order to address more effectively the challenge of transnational crime threats. The revised Lyon Group Recommendations, now entitled the G8 Recommendations on Transnational Crime, were endorsed by G8 Ministers of Justice and the Interior (Mont-Tremblant, May 13-14, 2002)."

P8 - Senior Experts Group Recommendations
To combat Transnational Organized Crime efficiently members recommend the following:
1. States should review their laws governing criminal offences, jurisdiction, law
enforcement powers and international cooperation, as well as their measures dealing with
law enforcement training and crime prevention, to ensure that the special problems
created by Transnational Organized Crime are effectively addressed.
2. With the aim of improving mutual assistance, States should, as needed, develop mutual
legal assistance arrangements or treaties, and exercise flexibility in the execution of
requests for mutual assistance.
3. States should, where feasible, render mutual assistance, notwithstanding the absence of
dual criminality.
4. States developing mutual assistance treaties should ensure that the treaties:
a) provide a clear description of the scope of the assistance available,
b) encourage a speedy process of assistance,
c) are as comprehensive as possible in terms of types of assistance available and,
d) reflect the principle that evidence will be gathered in the manner sought by the
requesting states, unless the procedures are contrary to the fundamental principles of the
law of the Requested State. To further facilitate cooperation against Transnational
Organized Crime, States should consider negotiating arrangements in areas that are not
covered by Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties.
5. States should establish a Central Authority which would be structured to provide speedy
coordination of requests. The Central Authority should provide a quality control and
prioritizing function for both incoming and outgoing requests to take into account both
the seriousness of the offence and the urgency of the request.
At the same time, the Central Authority should not be seen as an exclusive channel for
assistance between States. Direct exchange of information between law enforcement
agencies should be encouraged to the extent permitted by domestic laws or arrangements.
6. States should prepare and distribute to other States materials that would describe the
channels of communication for mutual assistance and extradition and the process for
obtaining such assistance from that State.

7. In cases where a criminal activity occurs in several countries, States with jurisdiction
should coordinate their prosecutions and the use of mutual assistance measures in a
strategic manner so as to be more efficient in the fight against transnational criminal
8. States should be encouraged to develop, through treaties, arrangements and legislation, a
network for extradition.
States should modernise their extradition treaties by eliminating the lists of crimes and
allowing for extradition of conduct punishable in both States by deprivation of liberty in
excess of an agreed minimum period.
States should make best efforts to ensure that their domestic arrangements for extradition
are flexible enough to permit extradition to States of a different legal tradition. They
should seek to identify and eliminate obstacles to extradition, including those that may
arise from the differences between legal systems, by, for example, simplifying
evidentiary and procedural requirements.
9. States should ensure that their domestic arrangements for extradition are as effective and
expeditious as possible.
States should also consider the possibility of extradition without a treaty.
10. If extradition of nationals is not permitted by the Requested State, and the extradition of
one of its nationals is requested, the Requested State should:
1) allow for conditional extradition on the condition that it is only for trial and that its
national be promptly returned after trial to its territory for service of any sentence within
the limits of the law of the Requested State, or
2) allow for transfer/surrender, when it is permitted by domestic law, only for trail
and on the condition that its national be promptly returned after trial to its territory for
service of any sentence within the limits of the law of the Requested State, or
3) apply the rule of Ğaut dedere, aut judicareğ by, at the request of the Requesting
State, submitting the case to its competent authorities in order that proceedings may be
taken if they are considered appropriate.
11. States should promote other techniques for mutual education that will facilitate mutual
assistance and extradition, such as language training, secondments and exchanges
between personnel in Central Authorities or between executing and requesting agencies.
Training courses, joint seminars and information exchange sessions should be
encouraged on a bilateral, regional and world wide basis.
12. Consideration should also be given to posting in other States representatives of
prosecuting agencies or of judicial authorities.
13. States should provide effective protection for individuals who have given or agreed to
give information or evidence, or who participate or who have agreed to participate in an
investigation or prosecution of an offence, and of the relatives and associates of those
individuals who require protection, because of risk to the security of the person.

14. States should consider, as appropriate, reciprocal arrangements for the protection of
witnesses and other endangered persons.
15. States should consider adopting appropriate measures to ensure the protection of
witnesses during criminal proceedings. These might include such methods as testifying
by telecommunications or limiting the disclosure of the address and identifying
particulars of witnesses. Consideration should be given to the temporary transfer as
witnesses of persons in custody enlargement of the admissibility of written statements,
and the use of modern technology, such as video links, to overcome some of the current
difficulties with obtaining the testimony of witnesses located outside the prosecuting
16. States should review their laws in order to ensure that abuses of modern technology that
are deserving of criminal sanctions are criminalized and that problems with respect to
jurisdiction, enforcement powers, investigation, training, crime prevention and
international cooperation in respect of such abuses are effectively addressed. Liaison
between law enforcement and prosecution personnel of different States should be
improved, including the sharing of experience in addressing these problems. States
should promote study in this area and negotiate arrangements and agreements to address
the problem of technological crime and investigation.
17. States should take all other lawful steps available under domestic legislation, to ensure
that they do not provide safe havens for criminals.
18. We commend the work does by Interpol and World Customs Organization calling upon
these organizations to maintain and develop their support for operational activity,
facilitating as rapid as possible as exchange of information between law enforcement
agencies. We call upon them to focus on a strategic overview of the methods of, and
trends in, Transnational Organized Crime for the benefit of all their member countries.
19. In order to facilitate the work of law enforcement practitioners we will, on request,
provide brief guides on our respective legal systems and on the mandates of relevant
20. States should identify within their existing structures central contact points for the
purpose of facilitating contact between their operational agencies. It may be useful to
locate these points in liaison with the Interpol National Central Bureau.
21. We stress the important contribution that liaison officers can make to the fight against
Transnational Organized Crime. We encourage States to make the most effective use
possible of their liaison officers in other countries and to consider additional postings. We
stress the need for liaison officers to have access, in accordance with the law of the host
country, to all agencies in that country with relevant responsibilities.

22. We reiterate our condemnation of drug trafficking which is a major source of finance for
Transnational Organized Criminal Groups.
Therefore, we:
· reaffirm the importance of the three United Nations Conventions (1961, 1971 and
1988) which are fundamental to action against illicit drugs,
call on all States to adopt and fully implement legislation in accordance with those
· believe in the value of giving the widest publicity to information issued by official
international bodies, such as the International Narcotic Control Board, on illicit drug
production, trafficking and the proceeds of the illicit drug trade.
· will work in all relevant fora to prevent the diversion of chemical precursors used in
illicit drug production and take necessary steps to implement fully all relevant
international agreements,
· welcome and support implementation of the recommendations of United Nations
International Drug control Program working group on maritime cooperation.
23. In order to ensure more effective transnational crime prevention, and foster public safety,
we will develop strategies to identify and combat the illicit traffic in firearms.
In furtherance of this goal, and in support of the specific recommendations contained in
the May 1995 resolution from the Ninth United Nations Congress on the Prevention of
Crime and the Treatment of Offenders and the July 1995 United Nationals Economic and
Social Council resolution, we will, and encourage other States to, review existing
firearms laws and regulations to facilitate discussion at an international level.
We will promote information exchange among our relevant law enforcement authorities.
We encourage States to enhance the exchange of information useful for law enforcement
purposes (e.g., data for the identification of illicit firearms and specific information on
tests conducted on firearms and ammunition which have been used in the course of
criminal activities.).
24. States should ensure that immigration services play their part in the fight against
Transnational Organized Crime. We note the involvement of Transnational Organized
Crime in alien smuggling and call upon all States to enact legislation to criminalize such
smuggling of persons. Immigration services and other agencies should:
- exchange information on the transnational movement of organized criminals,
- have as full as possible an exchange of information on forged and stolen documents
used by traffickers,
- consider the most effective means for its communication.
We will take necessary steps to improve the quality of our travel documents. We
encourage other States to improve theirs and will assist them to do so.
25. We support the exchange of law enforcement expertise regarding scientific and
technological developments such as advances in forensic sciences.

26. We emphasize the relevance and effectiveness of techniques such as electronic
surveillance, undercover operations and controlled deliveries. We call upon States to
review domestic arrangements for those techniques and to facilitate international
cooperation in these fields, taking full account of human rights implications. We
encourage States to exchange experiences of their use.
27. We emphasize the importance of giving the fullest possible protection to sensitive
information received from other countries.
The competent authorities of different States, should advise each other as to the
requirements regarding the disclosure of information in the course of judicial and
administrative proceedings, and discuss in advance potential difficulties arising from
those requirements.
A transmitting State may make conditions for the protection of sensitive information
before deciding whether to transmit it. A receiving State must abide by the conditions
agreed with the transmitting State.
28. Building on current cooperative arrangements, the different agencies in our countries will
develop their work together in specific law enforcement projects targeted on
Transnational Organized Crime. We have formulated practical guidance on project-based
action and commend this approach to all States.
Project-based action involves bilateral multilateral priority setting, targeting, resourcing
and assessment of law enforcement operations drawing on the strength of the full range
of competent agencies.
29. We welcome the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering to resolve to extend
criminalization of money laundering to other serious offences.
30. States should consider adopting legislative measures for the confiscation or seizure of
illicit proceeds from drug trafficking and other serious offences, asset forfeiture, as
required, and the availability of provisional arrangements, such as the freezing or seizing
of assets, always with due respect for the interest of bona fide third parties. States should
also consider the introduction of arrangements for the equitable sharing of such forfeited
31. States should consider implementing measures to detect and monitor the physical
transportation of cash and bearer negotiable instruments at the border, subject to strict
safeguards to ensure proper use of information and without impeding in any way the
freedom of legitimate capital movements.
32. States should adopt the necessary legislative and regulatory measures to combat
corruption, establish standards of good governance and legitimate commercial and
financial conduct, and develop cooperation mechanisms to curb corrupt practices.

33. We agree to share information on practical anti-money laundering techniques and to draw
on the experience gained to adapt and improve national and international training
activities in this area, in conjunction with the action of the Financial Action Task Force
on Money Laundering.
34. In order to improve understanding and information on the detection of financial networks
linked to transnational organized crime (in particular investments by Transnational
Organized Crime), we encourage States to take measures to gather financial information
and, as much as possible, facilitate the exchange of such information, including
exchanges between law enforcement agencies and regulatory bodies.
35. We urge States to adhere to and fully implement existing relevant multilateral
Conventions whose provisions effectively contribute to the fight against all forms of
Transnational Organized Crime, in particular the Conventions concerning control of
illicit drugs.
36. We will keep under review the possibility of supplementing existing conventions and
adopting new instruments, in response to developing needs in the fight against
Transnational Organized Crime.
37. We support and encourage the provision and reporting of clear and accessible
information on adhesion to and implementation of the main conventions.
38. In order to avoid wasteful duplication and to ensure that limited resources are used to best
effect, we urge International Organisations to coordinate their work programmes and to
concentrate their efforts within their areas of competence on activities of practical value
to member States.
39. We will work together in the governing bodies of International Organisations whenever
possible, in order to give more coherent impetus and coordination to the fight against
Transnational Organized Crime.
40. We will seek to ensure that all International Organisations that play and effective role in
the fight against Transnational Organized Crime have adequate resources to fulfill their
mandate. We will also examine possibilities for providing appropriate financial resources
for specific, practical and viable projects developed by competent International

More on This Topic


Going Clear

Author: Matthew C. Waxman
Foreign Policy

Matthew Waxman writes, "the result of shifting control to the Pentagon will likely be a more sustainable, if perhaps more restrained and...


The 3:00 AM Call

Author: Micah Zenko
Foreign Policy

Micah Zenko asks why we aren't asking Chuck Hagel about the stuff the secretary of defense actually does.


America's 'Pacific Pivot' Craze

Author: Max Boot
Los Angeles Times

Max Boot says the Middle East remains in turmoil. The U.S. should boost its air and naval assets in Asia but leave the other military...