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Code of Criminal Procedure

(entry into force on 1st January 1998)

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Article 127

  1. A claim for indemnification arising out of the commission of a criminal offense shall be considered in criminal proceedings upon the motion of authorized persons, provided that this does not considerably delay proceedings.
  2. The claim for indemnification may consist of a demand for the compensation of damages, recovery of an object or the annulment of a certain legal transaction.

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Article 180

(1) If inquiries into offenses cannot be carried out in another way or would be accompanied by great difficulties, the investigating judge may, upon the request of the State Attorney, order against the person against whom there are grounds for suspicion that he has committed or has taken part in committing an offense referred to in Article 181 of this Act measures which temporarily restrict certain constitutional rights of citizens as follows:

1) surveillance and interception of telephone conversations or means of remote technical communication;

2) surveillance and technical recording in premises;

3) covert following and technical recording of individuals and objects;

4) use of undercover investigators;

5) simulated purchase of certain objects and simulated bribery;

6) supervised transport and delivery of objects from offenses.

(2) Measures referred to in subparagraph 1 paragraph 2 of this Article may also be ordered against persons against whom there are grounds for suspicion that he delivers to the perpetrator or receives from the perpetrator of the offenses referred to in Article 181 of this Act information and messages in relation to offenses or that the perpetrator uses their telephone, telex, telefax or similar device.

(3) The execution of measures referred to in paragraph 1 subparagraphs 4 and 5 of this Article should not constitute a instigation to commit an offense.

Article 181

Measures referred to in Article 180 of this Act may be ordered if the following offenses are involved:

1) offenses against the Republic of Croatia and against values protected by international law punishable by imprisonment for a term of five years or more;

2) murders, robbery with severe consequences, money laundering, counterfeiting of money, illicit possession of weapons and explosive substances, acceptance and offer of a bribe, blackmail, kidnapping, extortion, associating for the purpose of committing a criminal offense, bodily or sexual abuse of children and minors, abuse of narcotic drugs, unlawful transfer of persons across the state border, international prostitution, pandering, avoiding customs inspection, obstruction of evidence, duress against officials engaged in administration of justice and abuse performing governmental duties;

3) offenses punishable by imprisonment for a term of five years or more when reasonable suspicion exists that such offenses are prepared or committed by a group of persons or criminal organization.

Article 182

(1) Measures referred to in Article 180 of this Act shall be ordered by a written order containing a statement of reasons. The order shall be executed by police authorities. The order shall state the data on the person against whom the measures are to be applied, the facts justifying the necessity for applying the measures and the term for their duration. Postal organizations shall render technical help to police authorities, the investigating judge and the State Attorney in executing the order.

(2) The measures undertaken may last up to four months. Upon the motion of the State Attorney the investigating judge shall, on account of important reasons, prolong the duration of such measures for a term of another three months. The panel of the county court shall decide on a disagreement between the State Attorney and the investigating judge (Article 20 paragraph 2). As soon as the conditions for surveillance cease to exist the investigating judge is bound to order the vacation of the measures undertaken. If the State Attorney desists from prosecution or if the data and information obtained by the application of the measures are not relevant for proceedings, they shall be destroyed under the supervision of the investigating judge, who will draw up a separate record thereon and enclose it with the file.

(3) The order referred to in paragraph 1 of this Article shall be kept in a separate cover. After the termination of the surveillance and even before that, the order on surveillance may be delivered to the person the surveillance was ordered against if he so requests, provided that this is to the benefit of the proceedings.

(4) If in the course of the surveillance and covert recording data and information relating to another offense are recorded, that part of the recording shall be copied and delivered to the State Attorney if the offenses stated in Article 181 of this Act are involved.

(5) Regarding the conversations of the defendant with his defense counsel the provisions from Article 69 of this Act shall be applied in the appropriate manner.

(6) If measures referred to in Article 180 of this Act are undertaken without the order of the investigating judge or if they are conducted contrary to the provisions referred to in Articles 180 and 182 paragraph 2 of this Act, the court's decision in criminal proceedings shall not be founded on the obtained data and information or on the evidence deriving from such data and information.

(7) The State Attorney Service and the investigating judge shall prevent in the appropriate manner (a transcript of the record or official notes without personal data therein, excluding the official note from the file etc.) unauthorized persons as well as the suspect and his defense counsel from establishing the identity of the police officials who carried out measures referred to in Article 180 paragraph 1 subparagraphs 4 and 5 of this Act.

Article 183

Police authorities may compare personal data of citizens kept in a database and other registers with police data records, registers and automatic data processing bases, provided that there are grounds for suspicion that the offense committed is an offense against values protected by international law, armed rebellion, anti-state terrorism, murder, kidnapping, extortion, abuse of narcotic drugs, money laundering and undermining the military and defensive power of the state. Information thus collected shall, along with a report on this to the State Attorney, be erased from the above-mentioned records as soon as it ceases to be necessary for successfully conducting proceedings, but not later than six months from the date they are stored. Upon the motion of the State Attorney the investigating judge may exceptionally prolong this term for three months if it is likely that in such a manner a search for a certain person or object may be successfully completed.

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[Search of Dwelling and Persons]

Article 211

(1) A search of a dwelling and other premises of a suspect, defendant or other persons as well as their movables located outside a dwelling may be carried out only if there is sufficient grounds for suspicion that the perpetrator, the accomplice, traces of the offense or an object relevant for proceedings will be found.

(2) The search of movables in pursuance of paragraph 1 of this Article comprises a search of a computer and other devices for automatic data processing connected with the computer. Upon the request of the court, the persons using the computer shall provide access to the computer, hand over the equipment on which data is stored (diskettes, tapes, etc.) and give necessary information for the use of the computer. A person who refuses to comply with the preceding provision, although the reasons referred to in Article 236 of this Act do not exist, may be punished by the authority carrying out the search according to the provision of Article 218 paragraph 2 of this Act.

Article 212

(1) A search of a person may be carried out if it is likely that the person searched has committed an offense or is in possession of objects relevant for proceedings.

(2) The search of a person shall be carried out only by a person of the same sex.

Article 213

(1) A search shall be ordered by a written warrant with a statement of reasons issued by a court.

(2) Before the commencement of the search, the search warrant shall be given to the person to be searched or whose premises are to be searched. Before the search of a dwelling, the occupant shall be instructed that he is entitled to notify a defense counsel.

(3) Before the commencement of the search, the person against whom a warrant has been issued shall be invited to voluntarily hand over the wanted objects or persons.

(4) A search may be commenced without previously giving a warrant and without an instruction on the right to a defense counsel or without an invitation to hand over the person or objects if armed resistance is expected or when it is required to carry out a search by surprise in cases where it is likely that serious offenses are involved committed by a group or criminal organization or whose perpetrators are connected with persons from abroad, or if the search shall be carried out on public premises.

(5) The search shall be carried out during the day. The search may be carried out at night if it was commenced during the day and not completed or if there are grounds to carry out a search without a search warrant.

(6) If a search is to be carried out in barracks or in a similar military building, the investigating judge shall deliver the search warrant to the military authorities who shall designate at least one military person to be present at the search.

Article 214

(1) The occupant or his representative is entitled to be present at the search of a dwelling.

(2) Two adult citizens shall be present as witnesses at the search of a dwelling or other premises.

Before the beginning of the search the witnesses shall be instructed to observe how the search is carried out and that they are entitled before the record of the search is signed to place their objection if they consider the contents of the record are incorrect.

(3) When conducting a search of premises of state authorities and institutions, a representative of such authorities or institutions shall be called to be present at the search.

(4) The search of a dwelling and a person shall be carried out carefully, without disturbing the good order.

(5) A record shall be made of every search of a dwelling or a person and shall be signed by the person whose premises have been searched or who has been searched and by persons whose attendance at the search is obligatory. Only objects and documents related to the purpose of the search shall be temporarily seized in the course of the search. It shall specifically be stated in the record which objects and documents are seized, and this shall be written in a receipt which shall be immediately issued to the person from whom the objects or documents have been seized.

Article 215

(1) If in the course of a search of a dwelling or a person objects are found unrelated to the offense for which the search warrant was issued, but indicating the commission of another offense subject to public prosecution, they shall be noted in the record and temporarily seized, and a receipt on seizure shall be issued immediately. The State Attorney shall be notified thereof. These objects shall be returned immediately if the State Attorney determines that there are no grounds to institute criminal proceedings and if no other legal ground for the seizure of these objects exists.

(2) The objects used to search a computer or other device for automatic data processing shall be returned to their users after the search provided that they are not necessary in further criminal proceedings. Personal data obtained by a search may only be used for purposes of criminal proceedings and shall be erased immediately when this purpose ceases to exist.

Article 216

(1) Without a search warrant, police authorities may enter a person’s dwelling or other premises and carry out a search as necessary:

1) if the tenant or occupant of a dwelling so desires or if somebody calls for help;

2) if it is absolutely necessary to execute an arrest warrant or to apprehend a perpetrator of an offense punishable for not less than three years;

3) if it is absolutely necessary to remove serious danger to the life or health of people or prevent damage to property of considerable value.

(2) In the case referred to in paragraph 1 of this Article the search can be carried out to find or secure evidence if it is carried out in the dwelling or other premises of the perpetrator. This search may only be carried out in the presence of witnesses.

(3) The police authorities may without a search warrant and without witnesses carry out a search of a person when executing a warrant for compulsory appearance or to make an arrest if it is likely that person is in possession of offensive weapons or tools or if it is likely that he will throw away, hide or destroy the objects which need to be seized as evidence in the proceedings.

(4) After conducting a search without a warrant, the police authorities are bound to submit a record of the search along with a report to the investigating judge and if the proceedings are not yet pending - to the competent State Attorney.

Article 217

If a search is carried out without a written warrant (Article 213 paragraph 1) or without the persons whose presence is obligatory at the search (Article 214 paragraph 1 and 2) or if the police authorities carry out the search in violation of the provisions of Article 216 paragraph 1 and 2 of this Act, the court’s decision may not be founded on the records of the search or on other evidence obtained in the search.

[Temporary Seizure of Objects]

Article 218

(1) Objects which, according to the Criminal Code, have to be seized or which may be used to determine facts in proceedings shall be temporarily seized and deposited for safe-keeping on the ground of a court’s decision.

(2) Whoever is in possession of such objects shall be bound to surrender them upon the court’s request. A person who refuses to surrender them may be fined to an amount not exceeding 2,000.00 kuna, and in the case of further refusal may be imprisoned. Imprisonment shall last until the object is surrendered or until the conclusion of criminal proceedings, but not longer than one month. It shall be proceeded in the same way against an official or responsible person in a state authority or legal entity.

(3) The provisions of paragraphs 1 and 2 of this Article also apply to data stored in devices for the automatic or electronic processing of data which shall be presented to the authorities conducting the proceedings upon their request in a legible and comprehensible form. When obtaining them, the authority conducting proceedings shall proceed pursuant to the regulations r4elated to maintaining the confidentiality of certain data.

(4) The panel of the county court (Article 20 paragraph 2) shall decide on an appeal against a ruling imposing a fine or imprisonment. An appeal against a ruling on imprisonment shall not stay the execution of the ruling.

(5) The police authorities may seize the objects stated in paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 of this Article when proceeding pursuant to the provisions of Article 177 and Article 184 paragraph 1 of this Act or when executing a court’s warrant.

(6) When seizing objects it shall be noted where they were found and they shall be described and if necessary their identity shall be determined in another way. A receipt shall be issued for the seizedobjects.

(7) Compulsory measures stated in paragraphs 2 and 3 of this Article may not be applied against the defendant or against persons exempted from testifying.

Article 219

(1) State authorities may refuse to present or surrender their files and other documents if it appears to them that disclosure of their contents would prejudice the public good. Banks may refuse to reveal data which represent a bank secret. If presenting or giving files and other documents or data which represent a bank secret is denied, the final decision thereon shall be made by the panel of the county court (Article 20 paragraph 2).

(2) Commercial companies and other legal entities may request that data related to their business be not made public.

(3) The investigating judge may require from a bank to deliver him information on the bank accounts of a defendant or another person against whom proceedings for the confiscation of pecuniary benefit obtained in consequence of the commission of an offense are being conducted. Such a request may be made even before the commencement of an investigation, or before the commencement of proceedings for the confiscation of pecuniary benefit if grounds for suspicion exist that the money obtained by the illegal trafficking of narcotic drugs or by involvement in the commission of offenses committed by a group or a criminal organization punishable by imprisonment for a term of more than three years are placed in those bank accounts.

(4) If following the decision of the panel referred to in paragraph 1 of this Article the bank does not deliver to the investigating judge the data requested, the investigating judge shall immediately inform thereof the National Bank of Croatia and undertake other lawful measures.

(5) The court may order by a ruling an individual or legal entity to suspend temporarily the execution of a financial transaction if the suspicion exists that it represents an offense or that it serves to conceal an offense or to conceal the benefit obtained in consequence of the commission of an offense.

(6) By the ruling referred to in paragraph 5 of this Article the court shall temporarily seize according to Article 218 paragraph 1 of this Act the financial means assigned for the transaction referred to in paragraph 5 of this Article as well as cash amounts in domestic and foreign currency and shall deposit them in a special account to be kept until the termination of the proceedings or until the conditions are met for their recovery.

(7) The State Attorney, the owner of the cash amounts in domestic and foreign currency, the defendant and the individual or legal entity who is to proceed according to the ruling referred to in paragraph 3 and 5 of this Act may take an appeal from the ruling of the investigating judge referred to in paragraph 3 and 5 of this Article.

Article 220

(1) When files of evidentiary value are temporarily seized, a list of them shall be made. If this is not possible, the files shall be put in a separate cover and sealed. The owner of the files may put his own seal on the cover.

(2) The person from whom the files have been seized shall be summoned to attend the opening of the cover. If this person fails to appear the cover shall be opened, the files examined and a list of them made in his absence.

(3) When examining files, unauthorized persons should not have access to their contents.

Article 221

(1) The investigating judge may order that postal, telephone and other communication agencies retain and deliver to him, against a receipt, letters, telegrams and other shipments addressed to the defendant or sent by the defendant if circumstances exist which indicate that it is likely that these shipments can be used as evidence in the proceedings.

(2) The State Attorney may order only the retaining of shipments but the agencies stated in paragraph 1 of this Article are bound to retain this order if they do not receive the decision of the investigating judge within a term of three days from the receipt of the order.

(3) The retained shipments shall be opened by the investigating judge in the presence of two witnesses. When opening, care shall be taken not to damage the seals, while the covers and the addresses shall be preserved. A record shall be drawn up on the opening.

(4) If the interests of the proceedings so allow, the defendant or the addressee may be fully or partially informed of the contents of the shipment, which may be delivered to him as well. If the defendant is absent, the contents of the shipment shall be communicated or the shipment shall be delivered to one of his relatives, and if there are none, the shipment shall be returned to the sender unless this would prejudice the interests of the proceedings.

Article 238

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(4) The witness may be permitted not to answer the questions from paragraph 3 of this Article (frst name and surname, father's first name, unique citizen register number for national of Republic of Croatia, occupation, place of residence, place of birth, age, and his relation to the defendant and the injured person) if his answer could endanger his life, health, physical integrity, freedom or substantial property belonging to him or another person.

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Article 239

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(5) Taking into consideration his age, physical and mental health or other justifiable interests, the witness may be examined by means of technical devices for the transmission of image and sound, so that the parties may examine him without being present in the room where the witness is located. If necessary, for such a type of examination the expert referred to in Article 198 paragraph 8 of this Act may appointed.