Changes to code of criminal procedure. criminal cases witness's right to counsel will be maintained


The Code of Criminal Procedure will be elaborated with an article which maintaines witness's right to counsel. Now this right is maintained only in the Constitution of Belarus and is being ignored often.

In spring 2015 Belarusian Helsinki Committee appealed (text in Russian) to The Constitutional Court to eliminate a legal gap and enshrine the criminal cases witness’s right to counsel in the law of Belarus.

This proposal was heard and on the 2nd of July 2015 The Constitutional Court passed a judgement in order to ensure the constitutional principle of the rule of law, to implement the constitutional right of everyone to legal assistance to exercise and protect his rights and freedoms, including the right to make use, at any time, of assistance of lawyers.  

In the judgement The Court has made a proposal to the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus to prepare a draft law on making alterations and addenda to the Criminal Procedure Code of the Republic of Belarus aimed at regulation of the right of a witness to make use of legal assistance of a lawyer during investigative and other procedural actions and submit it to the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus according to the established procedure.

The Council of Ministers has submitted the project. (Read the news in Russian).

The appeal of BHC to Constitutional Court was made in measures of the new procedure of the Constitutional Proceedings Act. It allows to the The Constitutional Court to consider appeals of the citizens, organizations and individual entrepreneurs on the lacunas, collisions and legal uncertainty in legal acts.

We have worked out practical guide (in Russian) which helps to understand the nuances of this procedure.