Head Of NABIS Visits Europol

23rd June 2015

The Head of NABIS has visited colleagues at Europol to learn more about the important work going on there to crack gun crime.

Europol is the European Union's law enforcement agency which aims to make Europe a safer place for its citizens and tackle the threat of serious international crime and terrorism.

Around 800 staff work at Europol headquarters in The Hague with colleagues from law enforcement agencies in the 28 EU Member States and in other non-EU partner states such as Australia, Canada, the USA and Norway.

Detective Chief Superintendent Jo Chilton visited to learn more about what goes on at the European policing base and meet officers and staff seconded there from various police forces.

She said: "I found the day very informative and look forward to NABIS working closely with Europol to tackle firearms criminality."

Det Chf Supt Chilton was accompanied on her trip to Europol by NABIS' Head of Intelligence, Ian Head, who is seconded from the National Crime Agency (NCA).

Ian chairs the European Firearms Experts group and was also catching up on Firearms EMPACT (European Multidisciplinary Platform Against Criminal Threats) work. Firearms is one of nine EU EMPACT priorities in this policy cycle which spans 2014-17.

This week (22 June) more than a 1,000 crime fighters across Europe logged on to take part in a webinar event chaired by Ian Head.

He said: "The webinar was hosted by NABIS to discuss the issue of firearms tracing and the use of the latest Integrated Ballistics Identification System (IBIS) technology to tackle gun crime. NABIS will also be hosting a firearms conference for European colleagues later this year."

Since 2014 UK Regional Organised Crime Units (ROCUS) have provided two officers to the UK Liaison Bureau at Europol to support intelligence work and tackle firearms trafficking across Europe. An officer from Merseyside Police and one from West Midlands Police both spent six months based at Europol in 2014.

The NCA-managed UK Liaison Bureau comprises officers from the NCA, Police Scotland, Home Office Immigration Enforcement, HMRC and the Metropolitan Police.

Neil Walsh, the UK Liaison Bureau lead for countering firearms trafficking, said: "Jo's visit to Europol HQ has further highlighted the importance of joint working within and beyond the UK's borders. The excellent relationships between NABIS, the NCA and Europol are making a real difference to protecting the UK - and the broader EU - from this pernicious threat."

For more information about the work of Europol visit https://www.europol.europa.eu/

For more information about the NCA visit http://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/

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