Federal Criminal Police Office: illegal offenders databases

Dr. Rolf Gössner

In 2002 we gave a BigBrotherAward to the Federal Criminal Police Office (Bundeskriminalamt, BKA) because it had established a several “preventive” databases. These contravene the registered persons’ right to informational self-determination. At issue were the “Violent Offenders” databases “Left” (LIMO), “Right” (REMO), “Crimes against Foreigners” (AUMO) and “Sports” (“hooligan database”).

In late 2008, the higher administrative court of the federal state of Lower Saxony found that the “Violent Offenders Sports” database did not have a sufficient legal foundation. The registration of more than ten thousand people was therefore illegal (case number 11 LC 229/08; the judgement is not yet final). Consequentially, all the records have to be deleted. The same applies to the other “Violent Offenders” databases as these are lacking in legal foundation as well. Again, thousands of people are affected.

Federal Administrative Office: discriminatory Central Foreigners Registry

Dr. Rolf Gössner

In the first BigBrotherAwards in 2000, we recognised the Cologne-based Federal Office of Administration (Bundesverwaltungsamt) in the “Lifetime Achievement” category for its Central Foreigners Registry (Ausländerzentralregister) – because of its institutionalised discrimination against non-German residents. Now the European Court of Justice ruled on 16 December 2008 that the Central Foreigners Registry constitutes a breach of the non-discrimination rule, because it disadvantages citizens from other European countries living in Germany (case number C 524/06). For the approximately 2.3 Mio. EU citizens in the Central Alien Register, it was ruled that the data storage is partly illegal. This applies in particular to the use of their personal data to combat crime in Germany and for statistical purposes. This protection against discriminatory recording, we think, should now be extended to non-EU citizens.