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One of the core tasks of the Office of the Attorney General concerns national security. This involves protection of the State in domains that exclusively or at least to a preponderant degree touch the State in its very core and affect its fundamental interests. Its task in terms of crimes against national security is understood as the prosecution and evaluation of crimes and criminal activities that are calculated to violate Swiss territorial sovereignty, its neutrality, the national economy, or that taken as a whole represent a grave threat to Switzerland's population, its stability, or the integrity of its constitutional democratic system.
The interests of the country are invariably directly affected whenever we are dealing with espionage, crimes involving the use of explosives or radioactive materials, or breaches in professional duties committed by Federal employees.
Organised crime, terrorism, money laundering, corruption
The Office of the Attorney General, in the performance of its tasks, makes an essential contribution to the fight against large-scale, cross-border crime. The focus is on cases of organized crime, terrorism, money laundering, corruption, and white-collar crime whenever vested with marked international or inter-cantonal features.
These types of criminal procedures constitute the lion's share of the work performed by the Office of the Attorney General. Such procedures are primarily characterized by the fact that the criminal offences have, to a large extent, been committed abroad or in several cantons. In addition, these cases are extremely complex as attested to by a multi-layered, refined modus operandi. For the most part, such criminal procedures also represent an enormous financial burden. As a rule, such cases call for specialized professional knowledge and intensive international cooperation. Furthermore, they imply a significant amount of time and effort, and appropriate resources are required to properly process such cases.
Centre of Competence for crimes against humanity
Switzerland strives to ensure an effective, transparent and all-encompassing prosecution of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes. In 2001, ratified the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and adapted the Swiss norms to fully align with the Rome Statute. The Federal Council decreed that the required legal modifications enter into force on 1 January 2011. Crimes against the interests of the international community fall under the sphere of competence of the Office of the Attorney General. In times of peace, the Office of the Attorney General basically conducts criminal procedures in cases of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes.
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