Asset recovery refers to the process by which the proceeds of crime are identified, traced, seized, confiscated and returned to their rightful owners. Generally speaking, States need to lead the process of recovering stolen assets. However, civil society organisations (CSOs) can play an important role in the different stages of the asset recovery process. This guide seeks to assist interested CSOs to understand potential areas of engagement and strategic considerations regarding routes of engagement; it also highlights potential risks and challenges and how these may be mitigated, and provides case examples of CSO efforts in support of the recovery of stolen assets.

The guide was first developed by the International Centre for Asset Recovery of the Basel Institute on Governance, jointly with partners, in the context of the Arab Forum on Asset Recovery (AFAR). Its content however is applicable at a global level and can serve as a useful guidance to CSOs from other regions as well. It has therefore been translated into a growing number of languages which will be made available through this website.

ICAR expresses its appreciation to the United Kingdom G8 Presidency, the World Bank/UNODC Stolen Asset Recovery Initiative (StAR) and Ambassador Muhyieddeen Touq of Jordan for their advice and support, and the following CSOs for their valuable contributions:

Full versions of the Guide are available in:

Additional language versions of this website and the full text will be made available shortly.