Difference between Interpol and Europol

Key Difference: Interpol, short for International Criminal Police Organization, is an intergovernmental body for facilitating international police organization.Europol, short for European Police Office, is a law enforcement agency solely for the European Union and its members.

Movies will have you believe that global organizations such as Interpol and Europol are responsible for tracking criminals and arresting them across the bordered. However, not always are movies correct; they are often exaggerated for ‘dramatization’ purposes. Interpol and Europol are two international organizations but they serve different purposes than the one shown in movies or TV shows.

Interpol, short for International Criminal Police Organization, is an intergovernmental body for facilitating international police organization. Think of them in this manner, they are a huge database that are responsible for keeping track of large international criminals and they also flag criminal activities based on requests made by member nations. In addition to having a huge database, they act as a liaison between different countries in order to create a more seamless governing body for police activities.

Interpol is also responsible for researching criminal trends across the member nations and provide them with such information. Established in 1923 after two failed attempts, the organization currently has around 190 countries as members. Interpol focuses on crimes such as public safety and battling terrorism, crimes against humanity, environmental crime, genocide, war crimes, organized crime, piracy, illicit traffic in works of art, illicit drug production, drug trafficking, weapons smuggling, human trafficking, money laundering, child pornography, white-collar crime, computer crime, intellectual property crime and corruption.

Europol, short for European Police Office, is a law enforcement agency solely for the European Union and its members. It focuses on handling criminal intelligence and fighting serious organised crimes by acting as a liaison between the relevant authorities of the member states, including those tasked with customs, immigration services, border and financial police etc.

It takes part in activities such as training and technical cooperation, strategic corporation aimed at exchanging general trends in organised crime, how to fight organised crime and exchange of personal data. Established in 1999, Europol has around 145 liaison officers as well as people hired from national law enforcement organisations. Europol focuses on objectives such as information exchange, intelligence analysis, expertise and training.

Both, the Interpol and Europol are responsible for acting as middle men and to provide information regarding various crimes and criminals. None of these agencies have the power to make arrests or any executive powers. They provide the information to the national law agencies and the national law organizations are responsible for making arrests. The major difference between the two is that Interpol is responsible for facilitating cooperation between the international police organizations, while Europol is responsible for facilitating cooperation between the international law enforcement.

Comparison between Interpol and Europol:

 

Interpol

Europol

Stands for

International Criminal Police Organization

European Police Office

Established

1923

1999

Headquarters

France

Netherlands

President/Director (2015)

Mireille Ballestrazzi

Rob Wrainwright

Responsibility

Functions as an administrative liaison among the law enforcement agencies of the member countries, providing communications and database assistance, assisted via the central headquarters

Handles criminal intelligence and combating serious international organised crime by means of cooperation between the relevant authorities of the member states

Executive Powers

No

No

Arresting Power

No

No

Objectives

To ensure and promote the widest possible mutual assistance between all criminal police authorities within the limits of the laws existing in the different countries and in the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. To establish and develop all institutions likely to contribute effectively to the prevention and suppression of ordinary law crimes.It is strictly forbidden for the Organization to undertake any intervention or activities of a political, military, religious or racial character.

Information exchange, intelligence analysis, expertise and training

Governing Body

Interpol General Assembly

The Justice and Home Affairs Council via the Europol Management Board

Cover Crimes

Public safety and battling terrorism, crimes against humanity, environmental crime, genocide, war crimes,[5] organized crime, piracy, illicit traffic in works of art, illicit drug production, drug trafficking, weapons smuggling, human trafficking, money laundering, child pornography, white-collar crime, computer crime, intellectual property crime and corruption.

Terrorism, international drug trafficking and money laundering, organised fraud, counterfeiting of the euro currency, and people smuggling

Image Courtesy:intelligence-sec.com, twitter.com

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