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This report identifies and assesses the role that national law enforcement actors and public prosecutors in the EU member states play in helping prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) by stopping the illicit trade in dual-use items. In the 1980s and 1990s, some EU member states discovered cases of illegal trade in sensitive items for use in, for example, the Pakistani nuclear weapon programme.
The report discusses how these cases were dealt with in these countries, using a case study model. Acknowledging that dual-use goods are subject to the free movement of goods within the EU, the report emphasizes the importance of coordinating customs and licensing standards among the EU member states to prevent abuse of the EU market for 'licence shopping'.
It also presents the argument for the coordination of prosecution and penalties for offenders. In order to show the level of coordination that is required, the report provides an overview of both the international, EU and national legal frameworks for control of the export of dual-use goods.