CEPOL Research & Science Conference 2022 MRU, Vilnius

e-Evidence: Collection, Analysis, and Sharing: An evidence-based policy perspective by the EU funded research projects LOCARD, ROXANNE & FORMOBILE
06-09, 09:30–09:50 (Europe/Vilnius), Panel Room III - I-408

This paper presents policy observations and recommendations on the basis of the research findings of legal and ethical nature performed by the teams of three EU-funded projects, namely LOCARD, ROXANNE, and FORMOBILE. The main focus of the paper is to examine how cross-agency and cross-border cooperation and coordination among public and private entities with law enforcement authorities in the digital age is being impacted by the respective legal provisions pertaining to the collection, analysis, and sharing of digital evidence. In particular, we review how the right to privacy and personal data protection prompt e-evidence examination and its value in the context of the fight against crime and terrorism. The challenges posed by the different approaches applicable across the Member States with regard to the lawful access, processing and sharing of personal information is discussed, as well as potential implications to the right to defence triggered by these differences. The main challenge identified in this direction is the lack of legal regime applicable to the e-evidence handling within the criminal procedure, which further intensifies the difficulty of the practical organisation of cross-agency and cross-border pending investigations. The paper casts a look on both the strong and weak points of the current framework when it comes to the cooperation in criminal matters, namely the existing mutual legal assistance treaties and the significance of the European Investigation Order with regards to these matters. On this backdrop, the current e-Evidence proposal is critically examined, offering evidence-based suggestions on how the draft provisions could be enhanced to suit the challenges met in a cross-agency and cross-border cooperation context better.

Ashwinee Kumar is a PhD research scholar at the "Law, Science, Technology and Society" research group of Vrije University Brussels VUB- LSTS. His research focuses on the interplay between Blockchain Technology and data protection law. He has been associated with several EU-Funded projects like ALADIN (Advance hoListic Adverse Drone Detection, Identification, and Neutralization), ARC (Awareness Raising Campaign for SMEs about GDPR), FASTER (First responder Advanced technologies for Safe and efficienT Emergency Response), INTREPID (Intelligent Toolkit for Reconnaissance and assessmEnt in Perilous Incident), and LOCARD (Lawful Evidence Collecting and Continuity Platform Development).

Before joining the VUB, he earned a Master of Laws (LL.M) in European and Transnational Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law in 2018 from the University of Goettingen, Germany, with the distinction “Sehr Gut”. His master thesis was on “Blockchain Technology’s Double Edges to the GDPR: What Liabilities a FinTech Service Provider Should Think Of”.

His research interest includes data protection and privacy, ICT laws, Legal Informatics, Comparative Constitutionalism, Human Rights, EU Law, and Legal Philosophy.