Central European Police Academy is the regional cooperation form of Central European countries with the same historical, sociological, cultural and religious development. Its member states are Austria, Hungary (also as founding states), the Czech Republic Germany, Slovenia, Slovakia and Switzerland.
CEPA’s primary objective is the promotion of practical cooperation on the field of fighting organized and cross-border crime.
CEPA (established in 1992) offers training activities in the following areas for police officers:
Main course: 11 weeks + appr. 8 weeks preparation
Target group: experts on organized crime and economy protection.
Integrated border security special course: 4 weeks + appr. 3 weeks preparation)
Target group: police officers dealing with border security issues – middle and advanced level knowledge of professional language.
Expert seminars in the member states: (4-5 days) – criminal, protection of public safety, border security areas – middle level knowledge of professional language
Professional observation: 1 week – at least middle level knowledge of professional language
Language observation: 3 weeks in German speaking countries – at least basic level of German language
Basic, middle and advance level 500-550-hour-long language courses at ITC start every February and September
More information on CEPA here or at www.mepa.net.
On the criminal course the number of participants is 26 (among them 4 Hungarian) delegated from the member states, on the integrated border security special course the number of participants is 24 (among them 3 Hungarian).
The participants are middle level managers – or those who are to be appointed – working on the fields of investigating organized crime and/or crossborder crime and/or practical experts selected from the executive staff of law enforcement bodies.
In order to be accepted for CEPA courses participants have to fulfill the following criteria:
- having completed university education, specialized higher professional education, officer training or other adequate training
- having at least 5 years practical work experience
- being between 28-40 years of age or in special circumstance up to 45 years of age
- having a middle or advanced knowledge of professional German language
- possessing good co-operational and communicational skills
The criminal course takes place in 8 countries changing venues every 1-2 weeks for 3 months. (The participants In Hungary spend 2 weeks). The opening of the course is in Vienna, the closure in Budapest.
Until 2001 the participants had to write a thesis in German on an organized crime topic, but from 2002 they are to solve a case study in joint work also in German.
The training of border management experts usually takes place in 4 countries.
Beyond the above mentioned two courses CEPA organizes 8-10 international seminars a year. The topics and the venues of the seminars are determined by the Governing Board. Beyond the planned program if new, criminally relevant phenomena turn up ad hoc seminar are held to provide opportunity for immediate, collective and thus more affective reaction The results of the seminars are compiled in seminar reports in German.
The Hungarian National Office of CEPA organizes free German language courses on basic and intermediate level of 500-550 hours and on advanced level of 500 hours. The main objective of the training is to recruit the participants of the main and special courses of CEPA.
At the end of the language course the participants take accredited, state language examination so that they can participate on higher level language training and on professional and/or language observation in German speaking CEPA countries.
Observation (Professional and language)
Within the framework of professional observation police and border police officers spend an average 5-10 days in another CEPA country carrying out professional tasks. The observation aims at the exchange of working methods and experience, but also improves language skills. Recently the number of foreign observers in Hungary has increased, which also improves the language skills of the accompanying Hungarian participants. Those who participate on CEPA’s main criminal course take part in a one-month language training in Germany.
The 8 CEPA countries issued a manual in 1999 in German, which was updated in 2001 and 2003 due to changes in legislation. It includes data on the political, legal, social, geographical and cultural features of the member countries, as well as a review of the actual crime situation and technical facilities available to combat crime.
The CEPA magazine is published three times a year under the editorial supervision of the Central Coordination Office in Vienna.
All remarkable and actual information can be downloaded from www.mepa.net
The intranet site of CEPA is currently under construction. It will be a useful tool in direct contact and information exchange and will also promote establishing new professional relationships. Its registered users will be all the participants of CEPA’s criminal and integrated border security special course with different rights.
Special tasks of the Hungarian National Office Besides the above mentioned activities, the Hungarian National Office organizes post-seminars on regular basis for the participants of CEPA’s criminal and integrated border security special course. The Office also compiles learning materials, special vocabulary, presentations, films, cooperates with national and international law enforcement and educational institutions.