The Italian Criminal Procedure System in Four Sentences
- The Italian criminal procedure system is a judicial proceeding that takes place before a judge, with the participation of the public prosecutor, the defendant, and (sometimes) the civil party.
- The purpose of the criminal procedure is to determine the responsibility of the defendant in relation to a crime and to impose a penalty in case of conviction.
- The Italian criminal procedure system is divided into three phases:
- The preliminary investigation phase, which begins with the crime report and ends with the defendant’s indictment.
- The trial phase, which begins with the trial and ends with the first-instance judgment.
- The appeal phase, which begins with the appeal and ends with the Supreme Court judgment.
- The person under criminal proceedings has a number of rights, which are guaranteed by the Constitution, the Criminal Procedure Code, and the European Convention on Human Rights.
Here is a more detailed explanation of each phase of the Italian criminal procedure system:
- Preliminary Investigation Phase:
- The preliminary investigation phase begins with the crime report, which can be filed by anyone who has knowledge of a crime.
- The police or carabinieri initiate the investigation, which has the purpose of gathering evidence in relation to the crime.
- At the end of the preliminary investigation, the public prosecutor may request the judge to archive the proceedings, to indict the defendant, or to apply a precautionary measure.
- Trial Phase:
- The trial phase begins with the trial, which takes place before a single judge or a panel of judges, or before the Justice of the Peace.
- In the trial, the parties present their evidence and their arguments.
- At the end of the trial, the judge pronounces the judgment, which may be acquittal or conviction.
- Appeal Phase:
- The first-instance judgment may be appealed to the Court of Appeal or to the Supreme Court.
- The appeal is filed with the Court of Appeal.
- The appeal is filed with the Supreme Court.
- The appeal and the Supreme Court have the purpose of verifying the correctness of the first-instance judgment.
It is important to know the phases of the criminal procedure, the rights of the person under criminal proceedings, and the methods of appealing criminal judgments.
- Crime: a behavior that violates the penal laws of a State.
- Accusation: the allegation of having committed a crime.
- Investigation: the activities carried out by the authorities to gather evidence in relation to a crime.
- Trial: the phase of the criminal procedure in which the parties present their evidence and their arguments.
- Judgment: the decision of the judge in a criminal proceeding.
- Appeal: the appeal filed against a criminal judgment.