In 2018, the Romanian Border Police pursued the fulfillment of the attributions provided by the national legislation in force, both in terms of optimizing border surveillance and control, as well as in the effective fight against cross-border crime .
In carrying out the specific activities, the Romanian Border Police aimed to achieve the following objectives:
- Implementing a dynamic and flexible organizational management, allowing the permanent modernization of the Romanian Border Police in accordance with the national and European requirements
- Ensuring the necessary human, technical resources, means of terrestrial and naval mobility, other specific equipment, for the fulfillment of specific missions by all subordinate structures.
- Applying national and European policies and priorities in a consistent and coherent manner in accordance with the competences conferred by the legislation specific to the field of activity.
- Managing illegal migration and cross-border crime registered in the border area of territorial border competence by implementing, in a unitary manner, the specific measures to prevent and combat them, coordination - within the limits and conditions established by the law - of the activities carried out the subordinate structures and the effective development of actions to investigate and investigate offenses related to organized crime, illegal migration and cross-border crime
- Monitoring, coordinating and ongoing evaluation of border control activities, how to implement the Schengen acquis at the level of subordinate structures, and follow up on the application of best European practices in border control.
- Ensuring a high level representation of the Romanian state, of M.A.I. and R.B.P in the context of cooperation relations with similar structures in neighboring countries, partner structures from the EU member countries, European agencies, as well as other institutions with which they collaborate.
- Managing and efficient use of financial resources allocated at the institution level.
- The traffic values recorded at the border crossing points were approximately 63,000,000 passages (51,200,000 EU citizens and 11,800,000 non-EU citizens) and 16,600,000 means of transport.
Compared to last year, the traffic values for the people who crossed the border of Romania increased overall by over 5%, but on border sections there was an increase at the border with Moldova as well as at the air border, over 8%.
- In the year 2018 there were found 17,883 illegal deeds out of which 7,524 criminal deeds and 10,359 offenses.
Most of the detected offenses concerned attempted or unlawful crossing of the border (1,580 deeds), followed by forgery and use of forged documents(1,217) and economic and financial, including smuggling of goods (1,199 facts)
Last year, most of the criminal offenses were detected at the border with Moldova Republic, the number representing 25.5% of the number of offenses found at the border of Romania. At the same border, most sanctions were also applied, 33% of the total number. At the same time, with regard to the number of offenses found, the border with Serbia recorded the largest decrease by 58.5% compared to the similar period of 2017, due to the considerable decrease in the flow of migrants.
In 2018, 7,388 foreign citizens were not allowed to enter the country as a result of the failure to meet the legal conditions for entering the country, registering an increase of 35.5% compared to the previous year. The main reasons why the non-admission measure was ordered were: they did not have the necessary documentation to justify the purpose and conditions of stay, or did not have a valid visa or a valid residence permit.
Also, following the checks carried out, entry was denied to 106 foreign citizens who were reported as a threat to public order, national security, public health or international relations.
At the same time, 125,171 Schengen or national alerts were detected at the border control, respectively 2.756 wanted persons, Romanian and foreign citizens, were given to the competent authorities,
On the line of illegal migration border police detected in the area of competence 2,986 foreign citizens who attempted to cross the border illegally, of which 1,649 on the entry into the country and 1,337 in the exit direction, most of them acting illegally at the border organized in groups of migrants, with the support of traffickers.
- 425 migrant groups and 170 facilitators were detected, Romanian and foreign citizens, involved in supporting migrants in the attempt to cross illegally the border
- a total of 1,620 people were trapped illegally on the green border, 1,078 of the identified migrants attempted to illegally cross the frontier hidden in the means of transport and the other 288 people were detected trying to cross illegally using other methods (travel documents and false visas, person substitution, avoidance of border control, etc.)
- a total of 847 persons applied for asylum status at the border police structures, being handed over to the representatives of the General Inspectorate for Immigration for the undertaking of the legal measures.
Also, during the reference period,there were about 400 cases of intervention to prevent the illegal entry of more than 2,700 people at the Romanian-Serbian border.
Regarding the nationality of persons found in the attempt to cross the border illegally, most citizens come from the following countries: Iraq, Iran, Syria, Turkey, Afghanistan, Albania Pakistan, Vietnam and Palestine.
Compared to 2017, we can observe:
- Decrease of the number of persons detected at the green border by 52.9% on the entry into Romania and by 80% on the exit direction;
- Increase of the number of migrants hidden in the means of transport in the country and by over 25% on the exit direction.
- In 2018, at the maritime border there were no recorded cases of Black Sea boat migrants.
In order to manage the migration phenomenon at the Romanian borders, the following measures were arranged:
- At the border with Serbia, in 2018, the measures of action carried out with the participating MIA forces and personnel relocation and patrol and surveillance techniques were maintained. Airborne surveillance missions with IGAv support were also carried out.
- At the border with the Republic of Bulgaria, since June, measures have been adopted to strengthen border surveillance and control, including the relocation of personnel and TIBP Giugiu equipment to strengthen the identified risk areas.
- in the Black Sea, the measures taken by the Coast Guard to Secure the Maritime Border, the investigations made in each case in 2017 that led to the identification and arrest of the guides, as well as the good cooperation between the states bordering the Black Sea within the Black Sea Cooperation Forum, in particular with the border authorities in Bulgaria and Turkey, has discouraged any attempts by traffickers to cross the Black Sea to reach Romania.
On 25.01.2018, the border guards of the BPS Moraviţa, during the surveillance and control missions in the area of competence, detected within the border area of Lăţunaş border, about 1000 m from the border with the neighboring state, 32 people who did not justify their presence in the border area. In preliminary checks, Iraqi citizens said they crossed the Serbian border to Romania with the intention of arriving in a state in Western Europe. The group consisted of 14 men, 10 women and eight children, ages 4 to 12. In this case, investigations have been carried out regarding the perpetrator of the fraudulent border crossing, the persons requesting the status of asylum-seeker.
On 12.08.2018, at BCP Calafat, a Serbian citizen came to the country to drive a Fiat brand minibus. The driver transports electronic products from Turkey to a Czech company. On the basis of the risk analysis, the joint control team of Romanian and Bulgarian border guards carried out a thorough check on the means of transport. In the minibus cargo compartment, 25 people (24 Iraqis and one Turkish) were found hidden among the electronics boxes. During investigations, migrants said they wanted to get to Western Europe, and the driver claimed he did not know how those people hid in the minibus. Border police have interrupted the voyage of the persons concerned, and according to the Romanian-Bulgarian protocol, migrants and the Serbian driver have been taken over by the Bulgarian Border Police in order to continue the investigations and to dispose of the necessary legal measures.
On 11th September 2018, at B.C.P. NADLAC - NAGYLAK presented to the Romanian country a Romanian citizen driving a truck registered in Romania, transporting, according to the documents accompanying the goods, honey for a trading company in Germany. By proceeding to exploit data from the specific risk analysis, border guards carried out thorough control of the means of transport. Inside the truck 53 people were discovered, including 32 men, 5 women and 16 minors. In research, migrants said they wanted to reach a state in Western Europe, and the Romanian driver claimed he was unaware that the people in question were hiding inside the truck. In the case, the border guards carried out investigations into the crime of trafficking of migrants for the driver of the truck, namely the attempted illegal crossing of the state border to the 53 persons
On the prevention and combating of smuggling of goods
- 68 economic and financial crimes and 1,131 offenses of smuggling and customs fraud were found, the value of confiscated goods being 152.5 million lei. Approximately 400 passers-by or attempted illegal border crossings have been detected on which goods that were smuggled or illegally trafficked were found.
For the confiscation of 4.7 million cigarette packs with approximate value of 41.5 million lei, over 183.3 kg of tobacco, 1.223 kg of hookah tobacco, and 18 groups organized to commit the offense were identified and destroyed smuggling cigarettes, involving 160 people.
Following the exploitation of the data and information held at the Border Police General Inspectorate on November 21, 2018, the B.C.P. Siret border police officers carried out a thorough check on two shipments loaded with rigips and mineral wool, in which there were three Polish citizens, after which a large amount of cigarettes was discovered. As a result of the cigarette inventory activity, 941,027 packets of cigarettes (476,117 packages in the first truck and 464,910 packages in the second) were hidden in the two cars, in the plaster boards and mineral wool, various brands, worth 903,386 lei. The whole quantity of cigarettes was lifted for confiscation by border guards, and the two cars were confined at the Siret BCP headquarters until the investigation was completed. The three Polish citizens were investigated for committing the smuggling, and the legal measures required were taken.
On November 08, 2018, border guards from B.C.P. Stânca noticed, on the direction of the Sadoveni border town, Botosani County, a VW branded minibus, registered in Romania, about which they held information that it is used for the transport of tobacco products. The regular stop signals were made, but the persons on the minibus fled to the nearby field, abandoning the means of transport. Since the people concerned did not submit to police summons, the border guards drew four warning shots vertically, respecting the legal provisions, but the smugglers did not stop. Imediat, au fost anunţate şi autorităţile de frontieră din R. Moldova despre caz, în vederea cercetării în comun a evenimentului de frontieră. Following the inventory of the parcels discovered in the minibus, the amount of 51,988 cigarette packs amounted to approximately 570,000 lei was discovered. Investigations have been carried out for smuggling.
Other property detained for confiscation:
- 11,690 liters of alcohol
- 16.6 kilograms of gold and silver jewelry;
- 191,000 Euro, 58,000 USD and over 1,000,000 LEI
- 461 heritage coins
On October 26, 2018, at B.C.P. Cluj-Napoca Airport a Romanian minor, 14 years old ,was introduced to enter the country, traveling from the United States via Munchen,. He benefits from the airline's minor escort service, following that he would be picked up by an adult waiting for him at the airport. Border police officers and customs officers carried out thorough checks including horse baggage, with hidden jewelry in several socks of precious metal and jewelry (earrings, rings, bracelets, pendants with color stones and different sizes) in weight total of 2.956 grams, with the value of approximately 472,000 lei. The entire amount of jewelry was retained by the customs authority and handed over to the Treasury of Cluj. The border guards carried out investigations under smuggling.
- Suspected stolen vehicles
During the analyzed period, 253 vehicles reported to be looker for by authorities or suspected to be stolen (207 cars, 29 minibuses, 4 motorcycles, 9 trucks and 4 trailers) were found in the area of police competence, with 67.5% more compared to 2017.
Persons involved in this illicit activity are Albanian, Austrian, Belgian, Bulgarian, Danish, French, German, Greek, Iraqi, Iranian, Italian, Moldovan, Polish, Serbian, Slovenian, Spanish, Ukrainian and Romanian citizens.
On 05.06.2018, at B.C.P. Ostrov, a Romanian citizen presented himself on the exit direction driving a BMW car, model X6, registered in the UK. When checking travel documents, border guards carried out additional checks on the car in question, as a result of which they found that the vehicle was being looked for by the UK authorities and was declared stolen. In view of the findings, the person stated that he was not the owner of the car and that he intended to go to Bulgaria to carry out the formalities for the registration of the car without knowing that it was reported as stolen.
On 05.10.2018, at B.C.P. Siret, a Polish citizen presented himself on the exit direction driving a Audi Q7 car with a registration number specific to Poland. Following checks on travel documents and checks in databases, border guards found that the car was seen as a good wanted for confiscation or use as evidence in criminal proceedings, with the alert being introduced by the Polish authorities. In this case the measures provided by the law were applied, the vehicle was confiscated and, as regards the Polish citizen, investigations were started regarding the perpetration of the crime of concealment.
Regarding intellectual property right, during the analyzed period, 377 criminal offenses were found, about twice as many as in 2017, when 182 criminal offenses were detected. Thus, border guards - independently or in collaboration with customs officers - have found counterfeit goods bearing internationally protected trademarks as follows:
- 144,427 pieces of clothing and linen;
- 30,019 pieces of cosmetics and perfumery;
- 121,166 pairs of shoes;
- 392,020 pieces of other products (electronic, electric, toys, IT accessories, car accessories, glassware / porcelain, etc.).
Other detections recorded in 2018, were the following:
- 250 weapons, most of them nonlethal, 10 115 cartridges (most of them for hunting), 132 900 pyrotechnic materials;
- 69 kg cocaine, 19.05 kg cannabis, 6.2 kg heroin, 0.39 kg hashish, 0.118 kg marijuana, 5.045 l and 1.2 kg precursors, 7.15 kg psychotropic substances, 5.7 kg amphetamines, 6.73 kg and 3 000 pieces of other drugs and anabolic substances.
During 5 - 6 December 2018, the border guards within BCP Giurgiu carried out specific actions in the field of countering trafficking with counterfeited goods, when several transportation means were selected for control. On the occasion of the thorough check, the border guards detected, in the baggage compartment of seven trucks, 8 472 textile products, footwear, purses and perfumes, goods bearing protected brand names, likely to be counterfeited , whose value was RON 1 170 000, if had been traded as brand products. During the investigations, the border guards concluded that the owners of the goods were four Turkish nationals and three Romanian nationals. The persons involved stated that they did not hold origin documents for the goods and the fact that they were likely to be counterfeited.
- In the field of preventing and countering fish poaching, 871 fish poaching crimes were ascertained, 1 058 offences amounting to RON 166 000 were applied and the following were seized: 34 crafts, 20 boat engines, 14 853 m monofilament nets, 1 478 fishing tools, 10 528 kg of fish (182 kg of sturgeon).
On 17.06.2018, the border guards within BCP Chilia, in the exercise of their duties, noticed at approximately 200 meters distance from the Romanian shore of the Danube, a craft in which three men were fishing. They were asked for their IDs and the border guards ascertained that they were Ukrainian nationals and they entered illegally the Romanian territorial waters aiming to fish illegally, using monofilament nets. The persons were investigated for committing fraudulent state border crossing and producing, importing, possessing, trading or using monofilament nets. The undertaken measure was to refuse their entry in Romania for 5 years and the 277 m of monofilament nets were seized. The involved nationals were handed-over to the Ukrainian authorities in order to carry on the investigations and to take the legal measures.
In order to enhance the international inter-institutional collaboration in the cross-border field, the Romanian Border Police developed work meetings at the level of the management and also specific activities according to the Agreements in force and the Cooperation Plans concluded in the field of observing the legal regime of the state border and in the field of cooperation for countering cross-border crime. On these occasions, current issues recorded at the common border were discussed, as well as the identification of new cooperation methods, including traffic decongestion at the borders.
In 2018, the Romanian Border Police held for 1 year the Presidency of the Black Sea Cooperation Forum, being on its fourth mandate. During the period of the mandate, new methods of cooperation were intended to be identified for efficient countering of cross-border crime in the Black Sea area, putting emphasis on the management of illegal migration phenomenon. The activities targeted the development and the implementation of a joint system for prevention for early detection of illegal deeds on the Black Sea, as well as the development of joint exercises in which participated all the states belonging to this organization.
The cooperation through offices/centers/border contact points carried out in good conditions. 22 674 assistance requests (10 095 requests were received and 12 579 requests were submitted) were submitted/received to/from the cooperation partners in the following fields: illegal migration, forgery in the documents used for border crossing, stolen vehicles, Customs fraud, identification of persons with criminal records, etc.
The action mode of the Romanian Border Police was appreciated by the European colleagues and FRONTEX experts on the occasion of our participation in the joint operations carried out on the Romanian territory or in other states.
In 2018, Romanian Border Police was engaged in 11 joint operations and 2 operational projects organized under FRONTEX aegis, participating with 172 border guards, experts in different profiles.
2 OPVs, K9 teams, patrol and duty vehicles and mobile thermo-vision cameras were deployed within Frontex operations.
The Romanian Border Police was represented by 13 specialists in the Frontex Situation Center and the National Coordination Center in Rome, as experts in incident validation and monitoring of suspect ships.
In 2018, the Romanian border guards onboard of RBP vessels carrying out international missions continued to rescue and to transfer onboard more than 600 persons in danger of drowning, on inflatable boat sailing in the Aegean Sea.
Currently, the national expert pool – EBCGT is made up of approximately 440 experts within Romanian Border Police, specialized in different profiles.
During 2018, more than 180 Romanian border guards participated in development and training activities in the specialty fields organized by Frontex Agency.
USE OF RESOURCES
Dynamics of personnel:
- approximately 92% employment degree
- more than 82% of the employed personnel carry out their activity in the operational field and 18% within support structures.
Ensuring the necessary of human resources at the level of Border Police structures was one of the priority objectives of our institution, given that we have the duty to fulfill specific missions and ensure a high level of surveillance and control of the entire border, especially, of the EU external border.
Thus, in 2018, the necessary steps were undertaken to occupy the vacant positions, both with graduates from Border Police education units/other units ensuring the necessary RBP training, as well as by direct recruitment.
Also, the education figures in our own training schools were supplemented; 600 graduates from School for Training of Border Police Agents “Avram Iancu” were employed.
- 2.100 border guards participated in courses (114 courses for career development/training programmes) organized by the education institutions of RBP, Ministry of Internal Affairs or other national specialized institutions;
- 125 border guards participated in training, specialty and continuous training courses under FRONTEX, EUROPOL, CEPOL etc. aegis.
- 935 border guards were rewarded (11.1% more in comparison to 2017)
- 159 border guards were disciplinary penalized (a decrease of 8.75% in comparison to 2017).
As a result of the implemented measures in the field of prevention and countering corruption deeds, in 2018, at the level of Romanian Border Police, 71 cases of corruption resistance (self-reporting), being informed immediately the territorial structures of the General Anticorruption Directorate. Of these, 11 represent self-reports finalized with flagrant activities organized with the support of the representatives of the General Anticorruption Directorate.
The technical component of the Integrated Border Security System (IBSS) is consisting of support subsystems, as follows: control, surveillance, fixed voice-data communications, professional mobile radio communications, IT, infrastructure, mobility and integrated logistic support.
The logistic actions within each subsystem – support of IBSS – were developed preponderantly from financing sources through the European non-reimbursable fund programmes.
In 2018, the emphasis was put on the development and modernization of RBP infrastructure, being carried out actions for drawing up and submission of design documents, building or modernization of several headquarters. 4 investment objectives are still implementing, financed through the Internal Security Fund for extension, modernization and rehabilitation of headquarters. In 2018, the works regarding the modernization of Border Police Sector Valea Vişeului headquarters - TIBP Sighetu Marmaţiei, respectively the modernization and extension of Border Police Sector Siret headquarters - TIBP Sighetu Marmaţiei at the border with Ukraine. Projects are still carried on targeting the construction of a new HQ in Border Police Sector Isaccea – Coast Guard, as well as the extension and the rehabilitation of Border Police Sector Darabani – TIBP Iaşi.
Also, there are in progress, in different stages of submission and analysis, contracting and execution, other investment objectives consisting of thermo-energetical rehabilitations of several operational premises, financed through Regional Operational Programme and SUERD – Priority Axis 3.1 – Supporting the energy efficiency of certain HQ belonging to the territorial structures of RBP, in TIBP Giurgiu, TIBP Oradea, BPS Calafat, BCP Vama Veche, TSBP Arad, BCP Negru Vodă, BPS Bechet, BPS Orlea.
Drawing up the technical documentations with respect to the design for the following investment objectives:
- construction of new HQ BPS Tomești - TIBP Iaşi;
- fitting of training areas at Training School of Border Guards Iași;
- rehabilitation of buildings within TIBP Sighetu Marmației;
Also in 2018, the fleet of cars was expanded through the purchasing of 189 patrol vehicles for operational activities, with financing from the state budget.
The endowment of the border crossing points at the external border of EU with new equipment meant for the check of vehicles/trains/ships will lead to:
- prevention and countering of illegal migration and cross border crime;
- the increase of the check level at the external borders of the EU;
- the development of operational activities, in optimum conditions and according to the EU recommendations;
- adaptability to the operational requests at European and national level;
- ensuring the security of the EU external borders.
Equipment necessary for insuring the border surveillance and control was purchased in order to increase the endowment degree, and, if needed, it will allow the replacement of the existing ones which cease to operate smoothly: fixed document readers, opto-electronic equipment for detection and identification-night vision devices with image intensifier, endoscopes for inspection of vehicles in narrow areas and kits for detection of smuggling (devices for verification of continuity of material density) with financing from the state budget and from European funds.
The current level of endowment for the mobile and fixed border surveillance equipment, as well as for the land and naval mobility means ensures the support of the specific operational missions; the endowment degree is between 53 and 78%.
- Budgetary funds: - the budget implementation was 99.94% and it was targeted the observance of financial discipline, the insurance of adequate financing, both the border surveillance and control activities and the financial-logistic activities of RBP structures, the insurance of financial balance between subordinate tertiary authorizing officers and framing of the expenses within the approved credit limits. As regards the financial resources management, they were used for granting the financial rights of the personnel and for procurement of material assets necessary for the institution, payment of utilities, fuel etc. Within the control activities carried out by the representatives of the Court of Auditors, there were not recorded non-compliances or deviations from the law in force.
- Non-reimbursable financial funds: Romanian Border Police, through specialty structures, managed projects financed from the INTERNAL SECURITY FUND, as well as projects financed from other types of European funds (programmes, mechanisms, non-reimbursable financial instruments) for which the financers are the European Commission, other national and international bodies, authorities and institutions.
Programmes carried out from Internal Security Funds – within the programme Internal Security Fund – Borders and Visas 2014 - 2020, the financing allocated to the Border Police increased with 42% in 2018, in comparison to the value allocated in 2017, respectively from EUR 62.2 million to EUR 88.6 million.
Supplementary financing allocated to the Romanian Border Police was meant for the procurement of an OPV and two intervention boats to be deployed within FRONTEX joint operations, the procurement of border surveillance vehicles and for the development and implementation of IT&C infrastructure.
Last year, 33 financing contracts were implemented and 8 contracts amounting to EUR 29.35 million were signed.
The total value of the contracts signed currently represents 69.3% of the financing allocated through this fund.
Projects financed from grants of the Commission, research-development programmes, structural funds and cross-border cooperation programmes
The General Inspectorate of Romanian Border Police participates in consortia, as beneficiary, partner or applicant, in different research-development projects, cross-border cooperation operational programmes and the approval of the European Commission was obtained for another 2 projects, amounting to EUR 4.3 million, within the Cooperation Programmes Romania-Moldova, Romania-Ukraine.
During 2018, in order to increase the endowment and modernization degree of the existing technical means, several programmes were carried out:
- “SAFESHORE” research project (System for Detection of Threat Agents in Maritime Border Environment) – the prototype designed to integrate different technologies and types of sensors was tested in the Black Sea region, able to complete the existing systems for border surveillance, granting the detection of small ships and persons, detection of UAVs/low-level drones and control devices (remote controls), carrying out unauthorized surveillance activities or illegal trafficking with prohibited substances and goods, surveillance of less accessible areas, with a high risk of violation of the border juridical regime.
- “SMILE” Project (Smart Mobility at European Land Borders) – the necessary equipment was purchased for the testing of new mobile control technology aiming to reduce the waiting times at the land border.
- “ABC4EU” Project (Automated Border Control Gates for Europe) – an Entry/Exit System solution-type was tested at the land border in BCP Calafat. The procurement documentation for the implementation of 6 ABC gates system in Otopeni Airport was drawn up.
- Second Line of Defense/ NSDD Programme – Nuclear Smuggling Detection and Deterrence – equipment in BCP Constanţa and BCP Jimbolia was installed, 109 portal monitors for detection of nuclear radiation at the level of the territorial structures.
PRIORITIES FOR 2019
For 2019, the Romanian Border Police intends the implementation of measures targeting the border field comprised in the programmatic documents, national strategies and Community legislation.
- Insuring and maintaining a high level of surveillance and control at the border and in the free movement area, including through the introduction and use of modern technology, at the level of European standards, depending on the operational necessities;
- Permanent monitoring and evaluation of the action mode on the state border control, following to observe the Schengen aquis provisions, as well as the implementation of European experts recommendations;
- Sustaining and promotion of European strategic projects as regards the management of external borders and migration, respectively the elaboration of efficient policies in this field;
- Developing the activities necessary for the maximum absorption of non-reimbursable Community funds meant for the security of the EU external border;
- Maintaining and developing cooperation / cooperation relations both internally and internationally with the authorities in charge of border management and similar structures in other EU Member States, neighboring countries and third countries;
- Ensuring the human, material and logistic resources necessary for the implementation of the integrated border management;
- Developing professional competences, as well as maintaining at a high level the training of own personnel, for the correct enforcement of the national and Community legislation;
- Developing the National Passenger Information Unit by connecting to the RO UNIP application a large number of airlines operating on the territory of Romania, as well as optimizing the PNR Data Recording System by implementing new capabilities.