Interpol’s Power: A Global Force in Combating International Crime

Interpol, also known as the International Criminal Police Organization, is a global entity that plays a pivotal role in fighting international crime. With its extensive network and collaborations with law enforcement agencies worldwide, Interpol possesses significant power and authority to tackle various transnational criminal activities. This article aims to delve into the scope and extent of Interpol’s power, shedding light on its role in maintaining global security and justice.

Member Countries and Jurisdiction

Interpol’s power stems from its vast network of member countries, which currently stands at 194. Each member country designates a National Central Bureau (NCB), acting as a liaison between Interpol and the respective country’s law enforcement agencies. This interconnectedness allows Interpol to exercise influence and coordinate actions across borders, transcending limitations defined by national boundaries.

Dealing with International Crime

Interpol serves as a vital tool in combating a wide range of international criminal activities, including terrorism, human trafficking, drug smuggling, cybercrime, and organized crime. Its power lies in its ability to facilitate information exchange, intelligence sharing, and collaboration amongst member countries, thereby enabling joint investigations and operations against global criminal networks.

Arrest Warrants and Notices

Interpol holds the authority to issue arrest warrants, known as Red Notices, and diffusion notices for fugitives sought by member countries. While Interpol itself lacks arrest powers, the organization serves as a vital mechanism for identifying and locating individuals suspected of committing international crimes. Red Notices are powerful tools that allow member countries to request the arrest and extradition of wanted individuals within their jurisdictions.

Databases and Information Sharing

Interpol maintains an extensive array of databases that hold vital information related to criminal activities, stolen identities, stolen vehicles, and even art theft. This vast repository of knowledge empowers member countries with essential tools for detecting, preventing, and solving crimes. Interpol’s databases, such as the I-24/7 secure global police communications network, enable real-time information exchange, strengthening international cooperation in crime prevention and detection.

Capacity Building and Training

Interpol not only possesses authority but also actively strengthens the capabilities of member countries to combat crime. It conducts specialized training programs, workshops, and capacity-building initiatives, providing law enforcement personnel with invaluable skills and knowledge. By sharing best practices and promoting standard operating procedures, Interpol enhances the effectiveness and efficiency of member countries’ law enforcement agencies.


Interpol’s power and authority derive from its extensive reach and influence as a global law enforcement organization. Its ability to connect member countries, facilitate information exchange, and coordinate joint operations against transnational crime makes it a potent force in maintaining global security and justice. With continued collaboration and cooperation among member countries, Interpol serves as a crucial platform in curbing international criminal activities and ensuring a safer world for all.

Iryna Berenstein
Associated Partner
Mrs. Berenstein is a distinguished and outstanding lawyer with profound experience and exceptional legal knowledge in the field of International Private Law, Financial Law, Corporate Law, investment regulation, Compliance, Data Protection, and Reputation Management.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice.


Frequently Asked Questions

How powerful is Interpol?
Interpol -  is a powerful international organization that facilitates cooperation and coordination among law enforcement agencies from different countries. It does not have its own agents or officers, but it provides a platform for member countries to share information and resources to combat transnational crime. Interpol's power lies in its ability to issue international notices, facilitate police cooperation across borders, and provide support for criminal investigations. Its effectiveness depends on the willingness of member countries to collaborate and share information.
Which is more powerful, CIA or Interpol?
The CIA is a secret intelligence agency focused on gathering information for national leaders' assessment and action. INTERPOL, an international police organization, collaborates with its member countries' law enforcement to identify and capture international fugitives. While both organizations operate across borders, their functions and styles are distinct.
Does INTERPOL have any real authority over local police?
Interpol is often misrepresented as an international police force with its own agents and operations, but it's more like a network of police organizations. Member countries cooperate on criminal investigations without violating their own laws or ethics. For instance, France might not arrest a suspect for the U.S. unless the death penalty is waived. Interpol doesn't have its own agents; "Wanted by Interpol" is a dramatic fiction. Not all Interpol actions are arrests; they may include activities like interviewing witnesses or verifying addresses in different countries.