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India: Punjab Passes Amendments to Indian Penal Code and Code of Criminal Procedure Making Sacrilege of Certain Religious Texts a Crime

(Sept. 10, 2018) On August 28, 2018, the Punjab Legislative Assembly (Punjab Vidhan Sabha) passed the Indian Penal Code (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2018 and the Code of Criminal Procedure (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2018 to introduce amendments to the Indian Penal Code and Code of Criminal Procedure (applicable only in the state of Punjab) that make […]

Belgium: Proposed Amendment on Removal of Abortion from Penal Code

(Aug. 23, 2018) On August 1, 2018, the Justice Commission of the Belgian Chamber of Representatives adopted a bill introduced by representatives of the Ecolo-Groen opposition party that would remove abortion from the Penal Code and place relevant provisions in a public health law. (Proposition de loi relative à l’interruption volontaire de grossesse (1er août […]

Australia: Bills Containing New Espionage, Foreign Interference Offenses, and Establishing Foreign Agent Registry Enacted

(Aug. 21, 2018) On June 28, 2018, the Australian Parliament passed the National Security Legislation Amendment (Espionage and Foreign Interference) Bill 2018 (Cth) (the Bill). (National Security Legislation Amendment (Espionage and Foreign Interference) Bill 2018, Parliament of Australia website; National Security Legislation Amendment (Espionage and Foreign Interference) Act 2018 (Cth), Federal Register of Legislation website.) The Bill […]

Brazil: Penal Code Amended to Stop Attacks on ATM Machines

(May 2, 2018) In an effort to curb attacks on ATM machines throughout Brazil, President Michel Temer on April 23, 2015, promulgated Law No. 13,654 (Lei No. 13.654, de 23 de Abril de 2018, Presidency of the Republic of Brazil website), which amends the Penal Code (CÓDIGO PENAL, Decreto-Lei No. 2.848, de 7 de Dezembro […]

New Zealand: Legislation Enabling Wiping of Historical Homosexual Convictions Enacted

(Apr. 11, 2018) On April 3, 2018, the New Zealand Parliament passed the Criminal Records (Expungement of Convictions for Historical Homosexual Offences) Bill, and it was signed into law on April 9. (Criminal Records (Expungement of Convictions for Historical Homosexual Offences) Bill, NEW ZEALAND PARLIAMENT (last visited Apr. 11, 2018); Criminal Records (Expungement of Convictions […]

Italy: New Law on the Protection of Judicial Witnesses Enters into Force

(Apr. 4, 2018) On February 21, 2018, a new law on the protection of judicial witnesses came into effect in Italy. (Law No. 6 of January 11, 2018, Provisions for the Protection of Judicial Witnesses) (Law No. 6), GAZZETTA UFFICIALE (G.U.) (Feb. 6, 2018) (in Italian).) This Law seeks to dismantle the judicial strategies so […]

Egypt: British Woman Sentenced for Carrying Painkillers

(Apr. 2, 2018) On December 26, 2017, the Criminal Court of Safaga, a town on the coast of the Red Sea, sentenced a British woman to three years in prison and fined her 100,000 Egyptian pounds (EGP) (about US$5,611) for the possession of the narcotic painkiller Tramadol. (Magdy Samaan & James Masters, British Tourist Gets […]

Germany: Proposed Amendment to the Criminal Code Concerning Advertising Services for Abortion

(Mar. 19, 2018) On February 22, 2018, the German Bundestag (Parliament) debated draft acts introduced by three parliamentary groups concerning a provision in the Criminal Code that penalizes advertising services for abortion. The amendments would either abolish the provision or restrict its scope to cover only grossly offensive advertising. (Gesetzentwurf der Fraktion BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN, […]

Bahrain: Amendments to Bribery Provisions in the Penal Code

(Mar. 19, 2018) On January 25, 2018, Bahrain issued Law No. 3, which amended a number of provisions of the Penal Code No. 15 of 1976. (Law No. 3 of 2018, Amending Some Provisions of the Penal Code Issued by Decree Law No. 15 of 1976, Official Gazette, No. 3350, Jan. 25, 2018, pp. 6–7, […]

Egypt: Two Singers Sentenced to Imprisonment

(Mar. 15, 2018) On February 27, 2018, the Egyptian court of misdemeanors sentenced two singers to imprisonment in two separate cases. In the first case, singer Sherine Abdel-Wahab was found guilty of insulting the state, which is a violation of article 80(d) of the Penal Code. (Brian Rohan, Egypt Courts Punish Singers for ‘Insults’ and […]