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England and Wales: Role of Magistrates’ Court in Decline?

(Sept. 22, 2010) The magistrates' courts in England and Wales have witnessed a decline in the number of cases over the past ten years, with over 310,000 offenders fewer heard in 2009 than in 1999. The role of the magistrate, which is coming up on its 650-year anniversary next year, is to deliver justice locally, […]

Cambodia: Rules for Victim Participation, Reparations to Be Considered by Tribunal

(Sept. 17, 2010) The Extraordinary Chambers of the Courts of Cambodia, the body conducting the war crimes trial of members of the Khmer Rouge, opened its eighth plenary session on September 12, 2010. The tribunal will be devoting this week to discussion of the internal rules concerning reparations and the participation in the proceedings of […]

International Criminal Court; Kenya: Office to Open with Immunity for Staff, Property, and Witnesses

(Sept. 8, 2010) The Kenyan government signed an agreement with the International Criminal Court (ICC), effective September 3, 2010, to allow the ICC to setup operations in Kenya and to facilitate the ICC's work of investigating and prosecuting perpetrators of the 2007 post-election violence in Kenya (Lucas Barasa, Kenya Allows Hague Free Run in Poll […]

Switzerland: Federal Procedural Laws Enacted

(Aug. 25, 2010) On January 1, 2011, several federal procedural laws will become effective in Switzerland. These will replace the corresponding laws of the 26 cantons as well as several federal enactments. These new federal laws are: the Swiss Code of Criminal Procedure (Schweizerische Strafprozessordnung), October 5, 2007 (AMTLICHE SAMMLUNG DES BUNDESRECHTS [AS] 1881 (2010) […]

Russia: Chief Justice Insists on Obligatory Role of Judicial Precedents

(June 29, 2010) On May 18, 2010, in a speech at the annual meeting of the Council of Judges, Russia's highest professional body for the country's judges, the Chief Justice of the Russian Supreme Court, Viacheslav Lebedev, stated that judges of all lower courts must obey the documents issued by the Supreme Court of the […]

Russia: Names of All Persons Sentenced by Courts Will Be Published

(June 21, 2010) The Federal Law of the Russian Federation on Information Related to the Activities of the Federal Judiciary (Information on Judiciary Law) will enter into force on July 1, 2010. The Law provides for publication of all rulings issued by federal commercial courts and courts of general jurisdiction on the day of their […]

Cambodia; United Nations: Funds Sought for Genocide Court

(Apr. 22, 2010) On April 19, 2010, United Nations Under Secretary-General Patricia O'Brien, the U.N. Legal Counsel, called for donors to contribute funds to support the genocide tribunal in Cambodia. The tribunal, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC), is handling cases of Khmer Rouge leaders accused of major crimes during the 1970s, […]

United Nations: Appeals Tribunal Hears First Cases

(Apr. 8, 2010) The United Nations internal appeals tribunal, established in 2009 to handle disputes between staff members and managers of the international body, handled 33 cases in its first session. The judgments will be translated into all the U.N. official languages and then posted online through the website of the U.N.'s Office of the […]

European Court of Human Rights: Members of Council of Europe Agree to Proceed in Further Reform of European Court of Human Rights

(Mar. 30, 2010) Reform of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) was the forefront issue of a conference held in Interlaken, Switzerland, on February 10, 2010, by ministers from 27 members of the Council of Europe (COE), under the chairmanship of the Swiss government. For the last ten years, the ECHR has encountered an […]

Nepal: Fast-Track Courts Ordered for Cases Involving Women, Children

(Feb. 24, 2010) On February 23, 2010, Nepal's Supreme Court made public a judgment that mandates the establishment by government authorities of a system of fast-track courts for cases involving women and children. To that end, those authorities – the Office of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare, […]