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Latvia: Restrictions on Sexual Services

(Dec. 2, 2007) On October 26, 2007, the Cabinet of Ministers of Latvia adopted a decree proposed by the Riga City Hall on limiting prostitution. Latvia is not a country where prostitution is legalized, but it is also not a place that prohibits the practice. According to the new rules, sexual services can be provided […]

Germany: Continuing Detention of Sex Offender

(Dec. 2, 2007) On October 19, 2007, the Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerichtshof) (FCJ) of Germany issued a decision that led to the release of a still dangerous sex offender after he had served his prison sentence (Docket No. 3 StR 378/07, available at http://juris.bundesgerichtshof.de/cgi-bin/rechtsprechung/list.py?Gericht=bgh&Art=en&client=3&client=3&sid=c04b4f1c4cc54c4cd5d3b53a243a9613 (last visited Nov. 16, 2007). The case involved a 60-year-old […]

Germany: Undercover Agents and Self-Incrimination

(Dec. 2, 2007) On July 26, 2007, the German Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerichtshof) (FCJ) held that an undercover agent may not persistently urge a suspect to confide in him as to whether he committed a crime and may not interrogate him as a police officer, if the suspect had already asserted his right to […]

Iraq: Iraqi Official Admits the Use of Violence

(Dec. 2, 2007) General Abdel-Karim Khalaf, a spokesman for the Ministry of the Interior in Iraq, admitted that some officers in his Ministry had used violence to extract confessions from those accused of committing crimes, but without the knowledge of people in high positions. He added that the Ministry of the Interior has what he […]

Africa: Death Penalty Developments

(Nov. 2, 2007) The non-governmental human rights organization Amnesty International (AI) reported in October 2007 on various developments concerning capital punishment in five African countries. Most notably, Rwanda abolished the death penalty on July 27, 2007, resulting in the commutation of the sentences of about 600 death row prisoners to life imprisonment. According to AI, […]

India: Death Sentences for Ex-Legislators in a Lynching Case

(Nov. 2, 2007) On October 1, 2007, the Additional Sessions Judge, Ram Krishna Rai, handed down a landmark judgment when he awarded a former member of the Parliament (M.P.), Anand Mohan, and a former member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) of the State of Bihar, Akhlaq Ahmed, sentences of death in a murder case. The […]

Chile: Regulations of the Law Establishing a Criminal Responsibility System for Juvenile Delinquents

(Nov. 2, 2007) On 13 December 2006, the President of Chile issued Supreme Decree 1,378 approving the Regulations of Law 20,084 of 2005, which establishes a Criminal Responsibility System for Juvenile offenders. The regulations address the rights of adolescents in the Chilean criminal law system, including, among other things, their right to a treatment which […]

Italy: Repeal of Capital Punishment

(Nov. 2, 2007) On October 2, 2007 the Italian Parliament approved Constitutional Law no.1, which amends article 27 of the Constitution, concerning the repeal of capital punishment. The previous reading of the fourth paragraph of article 27 was "Capital punishment is not permitted, except in cases foreseen in the military laws of war" (unofficial translation). […]

China: Implementation of Court Rulings

(Nov. 2, 2007) It was reported on September 26, 2007, that China's Supreme People's Court (SCP), Supreme People's Procuratorate (SPP), and Ministry of Public Security (MPS) recently jointly issued the Circular on Problems Related to Seriously Investigating and Punishing Criminal Acts of Refusing to Implement Judgments or Rulings and of Violently Resisting Court Enforcement. The […]

Mali: Cabinet Abolishes Death Penalty

(Nov. 2, 2007) L'Essor, a government newspaper in Mali, reported on its Web site on October 18, 2007, that the Cabinet had passed a bill on the abolition of capital punishment, replacing it with life imprisonment. It had been a penalty that could be imposed under article 4 of the August 20, 2001, penal code. […]