Interpol Red Notice Removal – Deleting an Interpol Red Notice
Red Notices have proven to be very efficient tools in order to locate and arrest individuals wanted by international police services.
This tool has however been used abusively by some countries for political reasons or in violation of fundamental human rights and it can be considered that a significant part of the Red Notices currently registered in Interpol’s database are abusive.
As a democratic organization, Interpol enforces a set of rules allowing to ask for the deletion of a Red Notice when it appears that such notice is abusive.
Our firm has extensive experience in challenging abusive Interpol Red Notices.
What is aN INTERPOL Red Notice?
An Interpol Red Notice is a request to locate and provisionally arrest an individual pending extradition.
The arrest can happen at any time in any of the member states, either travelling, crossing a border or at home.
It is issued by the General Secretariat of Interpol at the request of a member country or an international tribunal based on a valid national arrest warrant. It is not an international arrest warrant.
Interpol cannot compel any member country to arrest an individual who is the subject of a Red Notice. Each member country decides for itself what legal value to give a Red Notice within their borders.
The Interpol Red Notice provide information about the identity of the individual wanted and the reason for which his arrest has been requested (court sentence, involvement in a criminal investigation etc.).
Who can be subjects to aN INTERPOL Red Notice?
A Red Notice can be issued by Interpol at the request of a member country for individuals sought for prosecution or to serve a sentence.
When the individual is sought for prosecution it means they are suspected of committing a crime but have not yet been prosecuted and so should be considered innocent until proven guilty.
The crime for which they are sought must be a serious crime, considered as such in most countries. An Interpol Red Notice can also be issued when the individuals have already been convicted and are sought for serving a sentence in jail.
I am targeted by aN INTERPOL Red Notice, am I wanted by Interpol ?
No, Interpol is not a police service, but an international organization created to allow police cooperation among its members. Interpol has no power to arrest an individual, only local police at the place where the individual is located have this power.
An individual targeted by an Interpol Red Notice is wanted in the country who requested the Red Notice diffusion not by Interpol.
If I am arrested based on a Red Notice, will I automatically be extradited to the requesting country ?
Not necessarily. The arrest is just the first step of the process. As mentioned before, the authorities in the country where the arrest is performed are the only one competent to decide if an extradition process appears justified.
Sometimes, an Interpol Red Notice will only imply significant delays and checks every time the individual crosses a border. It can also leads to arrests and temporary detention either abroad or at home.
In some cases however, the Red Notice will lead to an extradition to the requesting country.
Decisions are taken based on the seriousness of the Red Notice but also on the level of cooperation between the requesting country and the arresting country.
Therefore, the same Red Notice may not be considered in one country but lead to an extradition in another.
Extradition are decided based on the applicable laws in the arresting country.
How long INTERPOL Red Notices are kept ?
Interpol Red Notices have a standard validity of five years, unless they are withdrawn earlier at the request of the country who asked for their issuance or upon a decision of the General Secretary.
The duration of validity can be extended at the request of the country who issued the Red Notice, for example if the individual wanted has not been arrested.
This is why it is not possible to assume that because five years have passed, an old Red Notice is not valid anymore.
How can I know if I am targeted by aN INTERPOL Red Notice ?
Except in the extreme case of an arrest it is usually hard to find out if one is targeted by an Interpol Red Notice.
Some information about most prominent Interpol Red Notices are published on Interpol’s website but most of them remain confidential until they are executed.
In some countries, local regulations allow for access to personal data including Interpol Red Notices.
Another way is to contact the Commission for Control of the Files (CCF) to request access to the notice. If the request is admissible, the CCF will check first that the requesting individual has an outstanding Interpol Red Notice.
Is it possible to challenge aN INTERPOL red Notice and ask for its REMOVAL/deletion ?
Yes, Interpol’s regulations allow for anyone targeted by a Red Notice to ask for its deletion.
The body in charge of assessing the validity of the request is the Commission for the Control of Files (CCF).
The proceedings are complex and may last long. The process involves an assessment of the Red Notice based on the criteria set forth by the Article 83 of the Interpol’s Rules On the Processing of Data.
In general, an Interpol Red Notice is valid if the following cumulative criteria are met:
An Interpol Red Notice may not be published for the following categories of offences:
An Interpol Red Notice may also be deleted if it appears that the prosecution is politically motivated or in case it appears evident that, as per international standards, there are insufficient grounds for prosecution.