THE HAGUE, Netherlands–U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Deputy Secretary Jane Holl Lute today joined Dutch Security and Justice Minister Ivo Opstelten to sign a Preventing and Combating Serious Crime (PCSC) Agreement—allowing for the exchange of biometric and biographic data between the United States and the Netherlands to bolster counterterrorism and law enforcement efforts while protecting individual privacy.
“Faced with ever-evolving transnational threats, it is critical that we enable law enforcement officers in the United States and the Netherlands to more quickly and efficiently investigate crime and prevent criminals and terrorists from entering our respective countries,” said Deputy Secretary Lute. “This agreement will strengthen our international efforts to combat transnational crime while facilitating lawful trade and travel between our two nations.”
“The agreement signed today underlines the efforts we have taken in fighting serious crime and preventing terrorism. In today’s society law enforcement agencies should be able to prevent and combat crime and terrorism efficiently in a way that respects both the national legislation and the standards on privacy. I am proud that the PCSC-agreement provides a solid basis for these goals and I look forward to continuing our intensive cooperation with the United States in this important field,” said Minister Opstelten.
Under the agreement, the United States and the Netherlands will leverage state-of-the-art technology to share law enforcement data, including fingerprints, to better identify known terrorists and criminals during investigations and other law enforcement activities. The agreement both outlines the best practices for sharing vital information to help prevent serious threats to public security as well as measures to ensure the protection and privacy of citizens in both countries.
To date, the United States has signed similar agreements to prevent and combat serious crime with 17 international partners. These agreements—negotiated by the Departments of Homeland Security, Justice and State—prevent individuals who commit serious crimes in one signatory country from continuing illicit acts in another and reaffirm the United States’ commitment to the reciprocal partnerships that advance the safety and security of the United States and its allies.