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Greece & Spain Referred to EU Court for Not Transposing Rules on Personal Data Protection.

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The European Commission decided to refer Greece and Spain to the EU Court for failing to transpose into their national law EU rules in relation to the protection of personal data. In April 2016, the Council and the European Parliament agreed that the directive had to be transposed by 6 May 2018.

In the case of Greece, the Commission calls the EU Court to impose financial penalties of 5.287,50 EUR per day between, on the one hand, the day after the deadline for the transposition of the Directive and, on the other, either the compliance of Greece or the date of publication of the decision under Article 260 (3) with a minimum lump sum of 1.310.000 EUR and a daily penalty payment of 22.169,70 EUR from the day of the first -decision until full compliance or until a second court decision.
In the case of Spain, the Commission calls the EU Court to impose financial penalties of 21.321 EUR per day between, on the one hand, the day after the deadline for the transposition of the Directive and, on the other, either the compliance of Greece or the date of publication of the decision under Article 260 (3) with a minimum lump sum of 5.290.000 EUR and a daily penalty payment of 89.548,20 EUR from the day of the first -decision until full compliance or until a second court decision.

The protection of personal data is a fundamental right enshrined in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. The aim of the Directive is to ensure a high level of protection of personal data and, at the same time, to facilitate the exchange of personal data between national law enforcement authorities. The Directive lays down rules on the processing of personal data by competent law enforcement authorities for the purposes of preventing, investigating, detecting or prosecuting criminal offenses or executing criminal sanctions. The Directive also ensures that the data of victims, witnesses, suspects and perpetrators of crime are properly protected in the context of criminal investigations. At the same time, better harmonization of legislation will facilitate cross-border co-operation between police authorities, prosecutors and judges in order to fight crime and terrorism more effectively across Europe. These EU rules contribute to an area of ​​freedom, security and justice.

The failure to transpose the Directive into national law of Spain and Greece creates differences in the level of protection of citizens' rights and freedoms and makes it difficult to exchange data between Greece and Spain on the one hand and the other Member States transposed the Directive into their national law. As a result, the Commission initiated the infringement procedure by sending a formal letter of formal notice to the national authorities of the Member States concerned in July 2018 and the corresponding reasoned opinions in January 2019. So far, Greece and Spain have not notified the Commission the adoption of the necessary national measures to transpose the Directive.

Article Source: European Commission - Press Release of 25 July 2019

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