We have a good understanding of Interpol’s ability to disseminate information and how difficult it will be for an affected person subject to a Red Notice to travel safely when the risks involved are properly considered.
The Red Notice Interpol is one of the most well-known types of Interpol notices because it serves as an international arrest warrant. But did you know an Interpol Red Notice is just an international notice for wanted persons and not an actual international Interpol red warrant and it can be challenged to remove Red Notice?
Once you appear on the Red Notice, all Interpol’s member countries will be able to see the details. People featured in these notices often seek the removal of red notice from them for various reasons. It can be a violation of fundamental human rights or for political reasons.
This guide gives you an in-depth knowledge of how Interpol’s Red Notices work, including the Interpol Red Notice removal process, subjects of Interpol Red Notices, the procedure followed when issuing Red Notices, and more.
|2011||7,678||30||15,708||Interpol published approximately 26,500 notices and diffusions in 2011. There were 40,836 notices and 48,310 diffusions in circulation at the end of 2011, and 7,958 people were arrested on the basis of a notice or diffusion during 2011.|
|2012||8,136||78||20,13||Interpol published approximately 32,750 notices and diffusions in 2012. There were 46,994 notices and 66,614 diffusions in circulation at the end of 2012.|
|2013||8,857||79||21,183||Interpol published approximately 34,820 notices and diffusions in 2013. There were 52,880 notices and 70,159 diffusions in circulation at the end of 2013; 1,749 people were arrested on the basis of notice during 2013.|
|2014||10,718||72||21,922||Interpol published approximately 39,250 notices and diffusions in 2014. There were 60,187 notices and 74,625 diffusions in circulation at the end of 2014; 2,336 people were arrested on the basis of notice during 2014.|
|2015||11,492||51||22,753||Interpol published approximately 42,266 notices and diffusions in 2015. There were 67,491 notices and 78,313 diffusions in circulation at the end of 2015.|
|2022||69,271||160||105,161||There are currently approximately 69,270 valid Red Notices, of which some 7,500 are public. Also, There were 113,880 notices and 105,161 diffusions in circulation at the end of 2021.|
The International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) is an independent international police body headquartered in Lyon, France. Essentially, the Independent body creates a framework to help law enforcement agencies of its member states to work together. Currently, Interpol prioritizes three primary crime programs; organized and emerging crimes, counter-terrorism, and cybercrime.
The body has 195 member states, and each member has its own National Central Bureau (NCB). National Central Bureaus are contact points between the General Secretariat in Lyon and the member states. Essentially, the NCB in each member country works as a division responsible for international police forces’ cooperation.
When searching for wanted individuals, policing and other law enforcement agencies from these international entities can record and share information on Red Notice criminals and criminal activities through Interpol’s advanced and secure global police communications system. Usually, the member country seeking an individual’s extradition issues a request to Interpol’s General Secretariat to notify other members about a specific fugitive. The General Secretariat then publishes the information in the Interpol Information System and issues a Red Notice.
Interpol shares Interpol’s red alerts and information globally using nine types of notices. Seven of these notices are color-coded, and each color has specific conditions. Here here are the nine types of notices used by Interpol today:
Once published, all 195 Interpol member states can view these notices. Besides member countries, bodies like the United Nations, International Criminal Court, and International Criminal Tribunals can use these notices to seek arrests of fugitives wanted for committing crimes within their jurisdictions. Such crimes could be war crimes, genocide, and crimes against humanity.
An Interpol Red Notice refers to the red alert Interpol issued by Interpol’s General Secretariat following a request from a member country. The requesting country could be seeking assistance to locate, arrest or extradite an individual scheduled to face a criminal investigation or charges. It contains the following information:
The legitimacy of Red Notices depends on whether they have complied with Interpol’s set rules and regulations. Once the Interpol Red Notice has met the set requirements, the fugitive can be arrested at any time and in any member state. This can happen when crossing the border, traveling, or in their home.
However, Interpol cannot coerce its member states to arrest individuals appearing on the Red Notice list Interpol. Every member has the legal power to accept or decline Red Notice requests within its borders.
When the issuing country is looking for an individual, it means the person is suspected of committing a serious crime such as murder, rape, or genocide in a given country. However, it does not necessarily have to be a home country; it may be the foreign country where the wanted person committed the crime. Technically, the individual being sought is considered innocent until proven guilty.
Interpol has a specialized task force that checks all Red Notices to ensure they comply with Interpol rules and regulations. This task force weighs the case’s civil, political, and human rights aspects against criminal aspects (ordinary law) to determine the predominant aspect. This way, it is able to know whether an Interpol Red Notice is valid or not based on the set guidelines in its Constitution.
It’s possible to challenge an Interpol’s Red Notice so that it is deleted or removed. The organization created the CCF (Commission for the Control of Files) to be assessing the validity of the Interpol Red Notice removal requests. The proceedings are usually complex and follow the criteria outlined in Article 83 of Interpol’s Rules On Processing of Data (RPD).
The best way to have a Red Notice removed is by challenging its validity. And since this organization is governed by its Constitution and the Rules of the Processing of Data, you need an in-depth understanding of these governing principles to be able to challenge a Red Notice. Here are four ways you can challenge a Red Notice:
According to Article 83 (1) of Interpol’s Constitution regarding Rules of Processing of Data, not all categories of offenses require a Red Notice. The offense must be a serious ordinary law crime. Here are the offenses that do not require Red Notices:
According to the RPD, once a Red Notice is issued for prosecution, the offense must be punishable by a maximum deprivation of liberty of at least two years. The RPD also states that if the Red Notice relates to an outstanding court sentence, the sentence must be imprisonment of at least six months. However, this approach is not always the best because the General Secretariat can still publish a Red Notice even if the above procedures are not met.
According to Article 83 (2)(b) of the RPD, a Red Notice can only be published when sufficient judicial data is provided. This includes a succinct and precise description of criminal activities, the maximum penalty possible, the law covering the offense, and the reference to a valid national arrest red notice warrant following a judicial decision. If the above thresholds are not met, you can make a strong case to have removing Red Interpol notice.
This approach involves reviewing whether the Interpol Red Notice conforms with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) or not. If the Red Notice request from a member state does not comply with the principles of the UDHR, you can request a Red Notice removal. For instance, your attorney can argue that you will not get a fair trial under Articles 6 and 10 UDHR.
Article 3 of Interpol’s constitution states that it is forbidden for Interpol to get involved in political, religious, military, or racial activities. This also gives you a channel through which you can challenge Interpol Red Notices.
According to Interpol, the wanted individual can take three actions to challenge its Red Notices for their name to be removed from the relevant Interpol database.
Similarly, your request must meet admissibility requirements for the CCF to consider it. This includes using the application form provided by the CCF and following all the instructions in that form. Here are the details you must include in the removal of the Interpol red notices request:
The standard validity of an Interpol Red Notice is five years. However, this period may vary depending on specific circumstances. For instance, an Interpol Red Notice can be withdrawn earlier following a request of the member state who asked for its issuance or following a removal decision of the General Secretary.
The validity of a Red Notice can also be extended for specific reasons. For example, the General Secretary can extend its expiry period if the wanted person is not arrested yet.
Sometimes Red Notices remain for months or years, even after charges have been dropped or after the wanted individual has been arrested. This may be because the requesting member has failed to request Interpol to remove a Red Notice.
It is usually hard to know if you are in Interpol’s Red Notice target. Usually, people become aware of it during extreme instances such as an arrest warrant. In most cases, most of the information concerning prominent Red Notices remains confidential until they are executed.
However, some local regulations in certain countries allow people to access their Red Notice information. You can also contact the CCF and request access to the Red Note data Interpol. Note that the request must be admissible for the CCF to check Interpol red notice whether you have an outstanding Interpol Red Notice.
It is important to contact an Interpol red notice lawyer if you find yourself on the red list Interpol. Rules surrounding Interpol alerts are complex, and the organization doesn’t provide legal aid when challenging a Red Notice.
As noted above, you may still be at risk even if Interpol has removed you from the Red Notice alert or has informed the member countries that the Interpol notice has been deleted. The information remains in local police computers for some time, which may lead to your arrest in specific circumstances. For example, you can be arrested by Red Notice police officers after providing a passport when crossing a border.
Therefore, ensure you always carry a copy of the letter indicating that you have been removed from Interpol records. You can request this letter from the CCF to prove that you are no longer in Interpol’s systems. Finally, you can contact Interpol’s red notice removal lawyers in the country you intend to visit so that the local law enforcement officers can remove your name from their national police databases. Our Interpol red notice lawyers will explain what red notice means, and help you and provide Interpol red notice explanation.