Ramallah, 3rd of May 2012 - A group composed of prosecutors from the Palestinian Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC), judges from the Corruption Crimes Court (CCC) and five defence lawyers concluded a workshop on corruption case preparation in Ramallah. The workshop, hosted by the PACC, is the first time that all parties came together in an effort to improve legal proceedings in criminal cases.
This workshop followed a PACC/CCC study trip on corruption case preparation which took place in March in Finland. The visit was organised by the EUPOL COPPS Prosecution team and was funded under the UNDP/EUPOL COPPS Joint Programme.
The head of the PACC, Mr Rafiq Natsheh, stressed that all parties must share the same view of the trial in order for proceedings to be conducted fairly and effectively. He also acknowledged EUPOL COPPS’ support to the PACC and the CCC in their adoption of the concept of case preparation.
The defence lawyers welcomed the opportunity to discuss the case preparation concept as a modern and efficient way to speed up court proceedings and save public money. It was also underlined that the starting point for case preparation takes place during pre-trial investigation between the defence lawyer and the prosecutor.
The CCC judges and the PACC prosecutors agreed that the first step will be to prepare time-lines and schedules for court hearings, an objective which can only be achieved with the support of all parties.
Finally, it was agreed that another workshop on case preparation will be organised in the near future with the aim of outlining the benefits of carrying out case preparation as detailed in Finland. Further actions may also include the creation of a committee to develop a framework for the introduction of the corruption case preparation concept.