Suspects in Europe: Towards a Real Commitment to Minimum Standards?
This paper reports on a research project (conducted between 2005 and 2006), funded by the European Union (EU), examining the procedural rights of persons suspected of a criminal offence in seven EU jurisdictions. The project sought to examine procedural rights, such as the right to legal assistance, the role of criminal defence lawyers, and the right to silence, from a practical perspective. The research found that whilst laws, practices, attitudes and cultures vary widely across EU jurisdictions, there is a general trend in jurisdictions with an inquisitorial tradition away from judicial enquiry towards police investigations supervised by public prosecutors. It also found that the ECHR is ineffective in establishing a common understanding of and commitment to minimum rights for suspects of crime. In this context, an EU mechanism for ensuring effective procedural safeguards is vital.
Cape, Ed (2007) Suspects in Europe: Towards a Real Commitment to Minimum Standards? In: W G Hart Legal Workshop 2007: Access to Justice, 26th -28th June 2007, Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, London. (Unpublished)
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