In 2016, the Albanian Assembly launched a comprehensive justice reform by adopting constitutional amendments along with 27 ‘urgent’ laws.
In the context of the mentioned, in 2017 a number of amendments to the procedural code where introduced which – coupled with the reform of the organization and functioning of the prosecution office in the Republic of Albania – have increased the autonomy of the prosecutors and have formalized their leading role on the investigative stage of the criminal proceedings.
Indeed, according to the amended Code of Criminal Procedure of Albania, the prosecutor and the judicial police conduct, within their respective competences, the necessary investigations in relation to the criminal prosecution. The prosecutor leads the investigations and shall have judicial police at his/her disposal.
Additionally, in April 2019 a new Law on Judicial Police has entered into force with the aim of improving the structural and functional reorganization of judicial police by increasing its responsibilities in conducting proactive, professional and efficient investigations as well as of clarifying the roles of the Prosecutor’s Offices and the Judicial Police, making the prosecutor a supervisor of criminal investigation, and delegating investigation competences and a part of the procedural actions during investigation to the Judicial Police.
Based on the information collected during several meetings and interviews that the Presence’s Rule of Law Department has conducted with relevant stakeholders from the ranks of the prosecution offices as well as the state police, a large number of prosecutors do not play a leading or proactive role during the investigation phase. This leaves the police to their own means and makes it more difficult for the judicial police to properly investigate a case and collect the necessary evidence, which in turn makes it more difficult for the prosecutors to successfully prosecute on the case files submitted by the police.
Also, while it is acknowledged that Albania has made progress in trying low and medium level cases of corruption, there has been no significant progress concerning the prosecution of high-level state officials. Reportedly, an increasing number of cases have been referred to the prosecutors’ offices, largely by police and/or independent anti-corruption state bodies. However, in the vast majority of these cases the prosecution offices have never initiated investigations, or the initiated cases have never resulted in final convictions.
A comprehensive analysis of the root causes for such ineffectiveness of police and prosecution has for long not been undertaken.
Against this background, the Rule of Law and Human Rights Department developed for the year 2019 the UB Project on “Supporting justice institutions and legislative process in Albania”.
The Project encompasses five components, one of which being enhancing prosecution-police cooperation and coordination in the investigative stage of the criminal proceedings.
The mentioned component aims to address and tackle the issue at its core by undertaking a thorough analysis which identifies the existing normative, professional and behavioural problems (formal procedures and informal practices) in the investigative stage of the criminal proceedings with the aim of improving communication, cooperation and coordination between investigative bodies and prosecutors for effectively carrying out criminal proceedings. The analysis entails qualitative and quantitative research methods including the assessment of the legislative framework in place, semi-structured and unstructured interviews with a carefully selected pool of prosecutors and judicial police officers as well as administration of questionnaires. The final product will be a baseline study and a set of recommendations on short term and long term strategies and actions to address identified problems, to be incorporated into present and future standard operational procedures pertaining to investigation.
The Presence’s Rule of Law and Human Rights Department is looking for an International Criminal Investigations and Prosecutions Expert with a consolidated background in criminal law, criminal investigation and in leading investigative teams, to implement the activities described under the following sections.
Under the guidance of the OSCE Manager of the project component and the Head of Department, the Expert is expected to draft a baseline study and recommendations meant to be incorporated into present and future standard operational procedures during investigation and prosecution. The baseline study and recommendations will cover general issues and problems pertaining to legal framework, procedural mechanisms and practices in place that regulate and allow for communication, cooperation and coordination between judicial police and prosecutors in the investigative stage of the criminal proceedings, including the investigation of corruption-related offences. Specifically, the expert will: Participate in a conference call (within a week from the contracting for this assignment), organized by the Presence’s point of contact to discuss about the structure, content and format of the report containing the baseline study and recommendations; Review and analyse relevant laws, bylaws, regulations, and any other material documents and data pertinent to the object of the consultancy as provided in English language by the OSCE PiA; Analyse the Statistical Report on the questionnaires administered by the OSCE PiA to the prosecutors and judicial police officers in the month of July 2019 as provided by the Presence; Analyse the Report on the interviews conducted by the OSCE PiA in the month of September with a selected number of prosecutors and judicial police officers as provided by the Presence; Conduct structured and semi-structured interviews, scheduled and confirmed in consultation with PiA designated staff, on Albanian procedures and practices on conducting investigation with the Chief Prosecutor of Tirana District Prosecution Officer, the Chief Prosecutor of the Serious Crimes Prosecution Office and/or the SPAK , the Head of the Police Criminal Investigation Unit as well as representatives of key international justice and investigative stakeholders such as EURALIUS, PAMECA and ICITAP; Report to the Presence on challenges of operations and achieved progress; and for that purpose, upon own initiative or upon request, attend skype meetings with the OSCE Project Team; Draft a comprehensive, substantiated report containing a baseline study of the findings of the analyses and interviews described in the foregoing as well as recommendations on short term and long term strategies and actions to address identified problems pertaining to legal framework, procedural mechanisms and practices in place that regulate and allow for communication, cooperation and coordination between judicial police and prosecutors in the investigative stage of the criminal proceedings, including the investigation and prosecution of corruption-related offences; Continuously liaise with and if necessary seek advice from the OSCE Project Staff throughout the discharge of the consultancy activities.
1) Report containing a baseline analysis and recommendations on the existing normative, professional and behavioural problems (formal procedures and informal practices) pertaining to the communication, cooperation and coordination between judicial police and prosecutors in the investigative stage of the criminal proceedings, including the investigation and prosecution of corruption-related offences. The report should be structured as follows:
• Executive Summary • Introduction and Background • Analysis of Legal Framework • Analysis of Procedural Mechanisms and Formal and Informal Practices of cooperation in Place • Analysis of findings from questionnaire and interviews administered by OSCE PiA • Summary of main findings (resulting from the above stated analysis) related to the overall and specific objectives of the assignment • Key Recommendations for short term and long term strategies and actions as well as identification of important areas for future engagement with respect to the objective of this project component.
The final report shall be submitted at the end of the assignment duration. However the expert may be expected to provide draft versions of the report, as it may be agreed on between him/her and OSCE Project Staff.
2) Summaries of each interview with the Chief Prosecutor of Tirana District Prosecution Officer, the Chief Prosecutor of the Serious Crimes Prosecution Office and/or the SPAK, the Head of the Police Criminal Investigation Unit as well as representatives of key international justice and investigative stakeholders such as EURALIUS, PAMECA and ICITAP. The summaries shall be delivered together with the final report, or at an earlier date as shall be agreed on between the expert and OSCE Project Staff. Payment after final submission of deliverables shall be effectuated only upon any final consideration of OSCE Project Staff are raised with and addressed by the expert, which shall be done within a maximum of 15 days from final submission. Thereon, following clearance from OSCE Project Staff, payment shall be effectuated.
Location The expert is expected to work remotely as well as to travel to Albania for a 3 days field trip to conduct interviews.
- Advanced university degree in law; - Minimum 7 years of professional experience in criminal law and criminal procedure as prosecutor, at least 3 of which in the investigation and prosecution of corruption-related criminal offences; - Experience in leading and coordinating investigative teams composed of prosecutors and police officer, preferably in the field of corruption; - Experience in conducting sector specific reviews, institutional assessments and/or evaluation/monitoring missions; - Ability to work independently and as part of a team; - Excellent spoken and written legal English; - Excellent analytical competence and interview skills; - Excellent legal drafting skills; - Computer literate with practical experience with Microsoft Office
- Experience in working as prosecutor, judge or criminal justice expert in international organizations or countries undergoing justice reform processes; - Knowledge of the Albanian justice system and the justice reform process; - Working knowledge of Albanian; - Previous similar experience in the region
The payment for this consultancy will be of the ammount of 6,750 Euros, payable in one instalment upon submission and aproval from the hiring department of the deliverables as stated in the Expected Outputs/Deliverables session
How to apply
All applications are due by 09 Sep 2019. If you wish to apply for this position, please use the OSCE's online application link found under link https://jobs.osce.org/. The OSCE retains the discretion to re-advertise the vacancy, to cancel the recruitment, to offer a contract with modified Terms of Reference or for a different duration. The OSCE is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all national, religious, ethnic and social backgrounds to apply to become a part of the organization. Please be aware that the OSCE does not request payment at any stage of the application and review process.