What is the International Criminal Police Organisation – Interpol?

Interpol, also known as the International Criminal Police Organization, is a global organization that brings together law enforcement agencies from around the world to fight cross-border crime. 

An important aspect of understanding Interpol is also to consider the role of an Interpol lawyer. An Interpol lawyer can help individuals or organizations navigate the complex procedures and processes involved in Interpol’s operations, and ensure that their rights are protected.


Interpol is the world’s largest international police organization, with a membership of 194 countries. It was established in 1923 with the aim of facilitating international police cooperation and combating transnational crime.

Interpol was founded in 1923 and is headquartered in Lyon, France. Over the years, it has undergone several changes and expansions, adapting to the evolving needs of global law enforcement. In 1956, Interpol became a specialized agency of the United Nations, and in 1971, it became an independent international organization.

The primary objective of Interpol is to assist law enforcement agencies around the world in their efforts to fight cross-border crime and to ensure the safety and security of the global community. This is achieved through the sharing of criminal intelligence and information, support for investigations, and the provision of operational and technical assistance.

How does INTERPOL operate?

Interpol has a decentralized structure, with a General Secretariat located in Lyon, France and a network of National Central Bureaus located in each member country. The General Secretariat is responsible for the day-to-day management of Interpol, while the National Central Bureaus serve as the main point of contact between Interpol and the law enforcement agencies in their respective countries.

Interpol’s functions include the sharing of criminal intelligence and information, the issuance of international arrest warrants, and the organization of international police operations. It also provides operational and technical assistance to law enforcement agencies and offers training and capacity-building programs.

Interpol cooperates with a wide range of international organizations, including the United Nations, the World Customs Organization, and the World Health Organization, among others. This cooperation allows Interpol to enhance its capabilities and to more effectively address global security challenges.

What services does INTERPOL provide?

Interpol’s International Wanted Persons Database is a critical tool for law enforcement agencies in their efforts to locate and apprehend individuals wanted for serious crimes. The database contains information on individuals wanted by Interpol’s member countries, including photographs and fingerprints.

Sharing of criminal intelligence and information Interpol facilitates the sharing of criminal intelligence and information between law enforcement agencies around the world. This helps to enhance the effectiveness of law enforcement efforts and to ensure that criminals cannot evade justice by crossing international borders.

Interpol provides support for investigations by law enforcement agencies around the world. This includes the provision of operational and technical assistance, as well as the organization of international police operations and the coordination of cross-border investigations. Interpol also provides training and capacity-building programs to help law enforcement agencies improve their capabilities and effectiveness.

Challenges facing INTERPOL

Limitations of Interpol’s power Despite its global reach and important role in law enforcement, Interpol faces several limitations to its power. For example, Interpol cannot enforce its decisions and relies on the cooperation of its member countries to implement its policies and procedures. Additionally, Interpol must balance the need to protect human rights with the need to effectively combat crime, which can be a challenging task.

Interpol has faced controversy and criticism over the years, particularly with regard to its handling of sensitive political cases and its efforts to protect human rights. Critics have raised concerns about the potential for abuse of Interpol’s tools and procedures by some member countries, and the need for greater transparency and accountability in Interpol’s operations.

Interpol is continuously working to improve its operations and capabilities in order to better serve its member countries and the global community. This includes the development of new tools and technologies, the strengthening of partnerships with other international organizations, and the implementation of reforms to enhance transparency and accountability.


Is a legal professional who specializes in providing legal advice and representation in matters related to Interpol. They can assist individuals or organizations that have been affected by Interpol’s operations, including those who have been placed on Interpol’s wanted list or those who have had their data entered into Interpol’s databases. An Interpol lawyer can help navigate the complex procedures and processes involved in Interpol’s operations and ensure that their clients’ rights are protected. They can also provide advice on how to challenge Interpol’s decisions and ensure that the organization operates in a transparent and accountable manner. An Interpol lawyer is a valuable resource for anyone seeking to understand and navigate the complexities of Interpol’s operations.


In conclusion, the important role of Interpol must be recognised and its efforts to improve its operations and capabilities must continue to be supported. As in any complex international organization, the role of an Interpol lawyer is crucial to ensure that the rights of individuals and organizations are protected and that Interpol is transparent and accountable.