Michael O’Kane and Alistair Jones on the operation of INTERPOL in business crime
INTERPOL was initially conceived during the first International Criminal Police Congress of 1914, which brought officials from 24 countries together to discuss cooperation in law enforcement. The plan was to build an organization which allowed national police to share and access information internationally, including about individuals accused of serious crimes. As INTERPOL now has 194 countries as its members, it has reach into virtually every country in the world. This capacity has a growing importance as globalization continues and police forces increasingly need to be able to make interventions beyond their own country’s borders.
In terms of the prosecution of crime and the punishment of offenders, among INTERPOL’s most significant tools are ‘red notices’ and ‘diffusions’. A red notice is a request, issued by INTERPOL, to law enforcement bodies worldwide to locate and provisionally arrest a person pending extradition or surrender. India is currently pursuing hundreds of suspected or convicted criminals by means of INTERPOL red notices. A diffusion is similar to a red notice, but can be issued more speedily, without the same formalities.