Criminal Justice: The European Criminal Records Information System (ECRIS) surpasses 4 million exchanges between EU Member States

Today, the European Commission has presented its second statistical report on the European Criminal records Information System (ECRIS). With this system, judicial authorities can easily exchange information on previous convictions of offenders. From 2 million messages exchanged by all interconnected Member States in 2016, the number reached nearly 4.2 million in 2019 with an average of 348,000 messages per month. The number of requests for information has tripled since 2017 – to hit 1 million in 2019 alone. However, the report also reveals that some Member States still do not fulfill all their obligations under the Framework Decision on the exchange of criminal records, in particular by not respecting the deadlines for replies. Commissioner for Justice, Didier Reynders, said: Criminals in the EU must not be able to escape by crossing borders. Only last year our system to check for criminal records in another Member State was used one million times. This is a European success story. But Member States need to use it to the maximum and respect the deadlines to reply.” ECRIS has been operational since 2012 and works to improve citizens’ security within the EU. More information about ECRIS can be found online, as well as today’s statistical report and annex.