Customs and foreign trade and payments criminal law
Cross-border trade in goods is of considerable importance in a globalized economy. It is subject to various provisions of the criminal law and the law on administrative offenses which must be observed by players acting internationally. On the one hand, this is the criminal customs law as part of the law regarding fiscal offenses by which the non-observance of customs obligations will be penalized. In particular, when importing into Germany, declaration obligations must be observed, the violation of which may result in the initiation of criminal or administrative offense proceedings by the customs authorities in charge. On the other hand, in the international trade in goods the provisions set forth in the Foreign Trade and Payments Law must be observed, the violation of which may also have consequences under criminal and administrative fine law. Not only the German regulations set forth in the Foreign Trade and Payments Law and the Foreign Trade and Payments Ordinance have to be observed, but also European and international regulations according to which the prerequisites for importing and exporting goods may change even at short notice (e.g., in case of country- or person-related embargoes). All this leads to a complex regulatory fabric.
We have long-standing experience in defending against violations of the customs law as well as in matters of the foreign trade and payments law, in particular in case of so-called dual-use goods that can be used for both civil and military purposes. In cross-border matters, we can draw on a network of law firms operating abroad.