Criminal Division of the Court of Cassation and Court Department of the Republic of Armenia in Germany

The delegation during their visit to the Ministry of Justice of Baden-Wuerttemberg. Back row from left: Public Prosecutor Dr A. Kees, Judge at the Regional Court Mr S. Ganninger; front row third from left: Dr M. Meßling, Judge at the Regional Social Court

The delegation during their visit to the Ministry of Justice of Baden-Wuerttemberg. Back row from left: Public Prosecutor Dr A. Kees, Judge at the Regional Court Mr S. Ganninger; front row third from left: Dr M. Meßling, Judge at the Regional Social Court

A delegation of the Criminal Division of the Court of Cassation of the Republic of Armenia discussed the issues of sentencing and the assessment of judicial activities at meetings of experts held in Stuttgart and Karlsruhe from 12 to 16 May 2014. The visit to the two institutions, with which the IRZ has been cooperating since it started to work with Armenia in 2011, was already agreed last year in Armenia. The two institutions work independently in practice, but are linked to each other insofar as the Court Department acts as the administrative body of the judiciary, which means it is in charge of employing staff at the Court of Cassation, Armenia's Supreme Court.


The delegation was first received on 13 May by the President of the Higher Regional Court, Dr Franz Steinle, and learned more about sentencing in Germany and the competence of higher courts to review sentencing by courts of first instance. Another topic concerned the distribution of functions among German courts. An overview of the German probation service system was provided during subsequent talks at the Ministry of Justice of Baden-Württemberg, among other things at the request of the Court of Cassation, which was particularly interesting against the background of the current introduction of a probation service in Armenia.

The delegation was able to shadow a criminal trial at the Second Criminal Division of the Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe, thus gaining an impression of a trial in Germany. The following expert talks were held with, among others, the Vice-President of the Federal Court of Justice, Mr Wolfgang Schlick. There was soon a lively discussion about the penal systems in Germany and Armenia.

On the last day the delegation met Volker Königschulte, who is in charge of fundamental issues of general and specific criminal law and international criminal law at the Federal Ministry of Defence, with whom the delegation talked about the criminal liability of German soldiers in Germany and abroad. The meeting took place in the jury trial courtroom of the Regional Court of Karlsruhe, which was kindly made available to the IRZ by the President of the Regional Court, Mr Alexander Riedel, for this meeting.

The issues of sentencing and judicial assessment will also be a focus of the cooperation between the two institutions in the future. Assessment in particular is being intensively discussed in Armenia, so that the IRZ will certainly continue to provide advice on this subject in the future.