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Professor Valsamis Mitsilegas, LLB (Thes/niki), LLM (distinction) (Kent), PhD (Edinburgh), SFHEA

Head of the Department of Law and Professor of European Criminal Law

Tel: +44(0)20 7882 8124


Valsamis Mitsilegas

Valsamis Mitsilegas is Professor of European Criminal Law, Director of the Criminal Justice Centre and, since 2012, Head of the Department of Law at Queen Mary University of London (QMUL). From 2001 to 2005 he served as legal adviser to the House of Lords European Union Committee. His research interests and expertise lie in the fields of European criminal law; migration, asylum and borders; security and human rights, including the impact of mass surveillance on privacy; and legal responses to transnational crime, including organised crime and money laundering. He is the author of six monographs and over 100 articles and chapters in academic volumes. His latest books are The Criminalisation of Migration in Europe (Springer, 2015) and EU Criminal Law After Lisbon (Hart, 2016). He is a regular adviser to parliaments, governments and EU institutions including the European Commission, the European Parliament and the EU Fundamental Rights Agency. He has been appointed for a second term to the European Commission’s Expert Group on Criminal Policy.

Professor Mitsilegas has a leading role in the establishment and development of a number of transnational research networks. He is Co-Coordinator of the European Criminal Law Academic Network (ECLAN) and a member of the Management Board of the International Research Network on Migration and Crime (CINETS). He has held a number of visiting academic positions and in 2015 he was appointed Copernicus Visiting Scientist at the University of Ferrara. He is founding General Editor of the Hart Studies in European Criminal Law, of the Queen Mary-Renmin Series on Comparative Criminal Justice Issues in China and Europe and of the Brill Research Perspectives on Transnational Crime. He is also General Editor of the New Journal of European Criminal Law and the Brill series on Immigration and Asylum Law and Policy in Europe. He has participated in a number of research projects involving transnational research co-operation, including the 40-month FP7 interdisciplinary research project on EU Action to Fight Environmental Crime (EFFACE) (2012-2016).

Professor Mitsilegas is involved actively in collaborative projects with civil society and NGOs. He is a member of the Research Advisory Group of the Howard League for Penal Reform and a member of the European Union Sub-Committee of the Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association (ILPA). He has been involved in a series of projects with the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) with recent publications including a Report on Access to Electronic Data by Third-Country Law Enforcement Authorities and a policy paper on The EU and its Counter-Terrorism Policies after the Paris Attacks. Professor Mitsilegas is a regular contributor to Open Democracy and was guest editor to the Open Democracy week on Surveillance and Privacy in 2016. Other media appearances include BBC Radio 4, the Times Higher Education Supplement, the New Statesman and the New York Times.


Undergraduate teaching:

  • LAW6001 EU Justice and Home Affairs
  • LAW6001A EU Justice and Home Affairs(A): Immigration and Asylum Law
  • LAW6001B EU Justice and Home Affairs(B):Criminal Law

Postgraduate teaching:

LLM in Paris:



Valsamis Mitsilegas' full publications list [PDF 36kb]

Key publications

Books authored

Edited volumes

Consultant Editor

Select Articles

  • ‘The Uneasy Relationship between the United Kingdom and European Criminal Law. From Opt-outs to Brexit?’ in Criminal Law Review, issue 8, 2016, pp.517-536
  • ‘The Evolving EU Anti-Money Laundering Regime. Challenges for Fundamental Rights and the Rule of Law’ (with Niovi Vavoula), in Maastricht Journal of European and Comparative Law, vol.23, 2016, pp.261-293
  • ‘The Transformation of Privacy in an Era of Pre-Emptive Surveillance’ in Tilburg Law Review, vol. 20, 2015, pp.35-57 (special issue on Privacy and National Security in the Digital Age).
  • ‘Solidarity and Trust in the Common European Asylum System’ in Comparative Migration Studies, vol.2, 2014, pp.231-253.
  • The Limits of Mutual Trust in Europe's Area of Freedom, Security and Justice: From Automatic Inter-State Cooperation to the Slow Emergence of the Individual, Yearbook of European Law 2012; vol.31, pp.319-372.
  • Immigration Control in an Era of Globalisation: Deflecting Foreigners, Weakening Citizens, Strengthening the State’ in Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies, vol.19, 2012, pp.3-60.
  • ‘European Criminal Law and Resistance to Communautarisation Post-Lisbon’, in New Journal of European Criminal Law, vol.1, 2010, pp.458-480.
  • 'The European Union and the Globalisation of Criminal Law', in Cambridge Yearbook of European Legal Studies 2009-2010, vol.12, pp.337-407
  • ‘The Third Wave of Third Pillar Law: Which Direction for EU Criminal Justice?’, (2009) 34 European Law Review 523-560 - The article is also Queen Mary School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No 33/2009
  • ‘La Mise en Oeuvre de l’Espace de Liberté, Securité et de Justice au Royaume-Uni’, (2009) 129 Revue Française d’Administration Publique (the journal of the ENA) 45-60
  • 'The Transformation of Criminal Law in the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice’, (2008) 26 Yearbook of European Law 2007, 1-32
  • 'The External Dimension of EU Action in Criminal Matters' (2007) 12 European Foreign Affairs Review 457-497
  • The EU legislative framework against money laundering and terrorist finance: A critical analysis in the light of evolving global standards' (with Bill Gilmore), (2007) 56 International and Comparative Law Quarterly 119-141
  • 'The Constitutional Implications of Mutual Recognition in Criminal Matters in the EU' (2006) 43 Common Market Law Review 1277-1311
  • 'Controle des etrangers, des passagers, des citoyens: Surveillance et antiterrorisme' (2005) 58 Cultures et Conflits 155-182
  • ‘The New EU-US Co-operation on Extradition, Mutual Legal Assistance and the Exchange of Police Data’ in European Foreign Affairs Review, vol.8, 2003, pp.515-536.
  • 'Defining Organised Crime in the EU' (2001) 26 European Law Review 565-581

Select Chapters

PhD Supervision

Professor Mitsilegas welcomes proposals for postgraduate research in the fields of EU law in general and EU Justice and Home Affairs law in particular, security, terrorism and human rights, and law and transnational crime (including organised crime and money laundering).

Professor Mitsilegas is currently supervising:

Public engagement

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