Union regulatory criminal law competence: Scope, limits and judicial review

Research output: Book/ReportReport


The question posed by this report is how limits can be constructed to the exercise of EU powers. While there are limits to the exercise of EU competences in the Treaties and in the Court of Justice’s jurisprudence, it is argued that those limits suffer from conceptual and practical problems. In particular, the Court does not have appropriate criteria to examine whether the limits of the Treaties have been exceeded by the Union legislator. The report uses one of the new, and controversial, competences that the Union has obtained, the power to impose criminal sanctions, as a case study to propose a mechanism by which legislative powers can be kept in check. The report makes two proposals. First, by interpreting the scope of the EU’s powers under the Treaties to impose criminal sanctions the thesis shows the limits to the exercise of EU competences. It demonstrates the scope of EU’s competences by analyzing current and proposed criminal law measures. Secondly, it develops an argument for a more intense and evidence-based judicial review. It constructs a procedural standard of legality which demands that the EU legislator shows that it has adequately reasoned its decisions and has taken into account relevant evidence. By testing the legality of discretely chosen criminal law measures on the basis of this standard, it is demonstrated how the Court can enforce the limits of the Treatie


External organisations
  • Örebro University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Law
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationStockholm
Number of pages122
ISBN (Print) 9789186107550
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Aug 19
Publication categoryResearch
Externally publishedYes