Criminal Procedure Code of the French Republic (as of 2006) (excerpts)

CODE OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE

 

TITLE
PRELIMINARY ARTICLE 


(Inserted by Law no. 2000-516 of 15 June 2000 Article 1 Official Journal of 16 June 2000)
I. Criminal procedure should be fair and adversarial and preserve a balance between the rights of the parties.
It should guarantee a separation between those authorities responsible for prosecuting and those responsible for
judging.
Persons who find themselves in a similar situation and prosecuted for the same offences should be judged
according to the same rules.
II. The judicial authority ensures that victims are informed and that their rights are respected throughout any criminal
process.
III. Every person suspected or prosecuted is presumed innocent as long as his guilt has not been established.
Attacks on his presumption of innocence are proscribed, compensated and punished in the circumstances laid down by
statute.
He has the right to be informed of charges brought against him and to be legally defended.
The coercive measures to which such a person may be subjected are taken by or under the effective control of
judicial authority. They should be strictly limited to the needs of the process, proportionate to the gravity of the offence
charged and not such as to infringe human dignity.
The accusation to which such a person is subjected should be brought to final judgment within a reasonable time.
Every convicted person has the right to have his conviction examined by a second tribunal.

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