Criminal Procedure Reform

Prosecutor Problems

Prosecutor Problems

It is impossible to postpone the amendment to criminal procedure and the Ministry of Justice sees no need for any postponement. The changes will come into effect in July 2015. Prosecutors from the Union of Prosecutors and Prosecutor Office Employees (ZZPiPP) called for a postponement (of at least one year) to the new law. According to the Ministry of Justice, the demands to lengthen the period of vacatio legis for a year are not justified. In his report on the activities of the Prosecutor’s Office, the Public Prosecutor General stated that “the fear that prosecutors will not be able to cope with more duties are unfounded.” In response to prosecutors’ claims that the police force is unprepared for the changes, the Ministry stated that “proposed changes in the police force are not the responsibility of the Ministry of Justice, whereas the changes that prosecutors are calling for do not require amendments.” Prosecutor circles also questioned the reform process of the prosecution system. Although the reform was supposed to be introduced as soon as possible, it has not yet been addressed at any government meeting. In fact, this should precede any changes in criminal procedure. The Ministry stresses: “The Ministry of Justice does not decide which project will be examined first by the Council of Ministers. We do not know when the government will examine the bill on prosecution.”

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