Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties

The first gateway for international cooperation is the MLAT (Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty), a legal basis for transmitting evidence. The following happens:

  • A “commission regatoire”, letter of request, or letters rogatory is sent indicating the information requested, the nature of the request and the charges, and the legal basis for the charge.

  • The central authority receives this, and sends it to a financial investigator to obtain the information (if possible).

  • An investigator from the requesting country visits the country where the information is, and accompanies the local investigator, to obtain the information.

  • Permission is then sought from the central authority to remove the evidence back to the requesting country

  • The central authority sends the information to the requesting country, satisfying the request for assistance

  • Local witnesses may need to attend court in the requesting country

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