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In partnership with the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan and its Law Academy, the IRZ organised a seminar on “Electronic evidence in criminal proceedings” in Astana on 19 November 2018. Since this subject is currently highly topical, around 90 people attended the event.
The IRZ was represented by three German speakers:
Senior Public Prosecutor Andreas May, head of the Centre for Combating Cyber Crime at the office of the Public Prosecutor General in Frankfurt/M, gave a lecture on the legal requirements for collecting evidence and using electronic evidence in criminal investigation and main proceedings.
Peter Jentsch, an investigator in the 31/2 (Internet Investigations) department at the Saxony State Office of Criminal Investigations, started by showing a short video on the initial attack and follow-up measures in connection with electronic technology. During his subsequent lecture, he went into detail on the potential for data backup during a search and on the prevention of data loss and data manipulation. Afterwards, the video was evaluated and discussed by the participants with the help of a questionnaire.
Regional court judge Jens Schiminowski, a researcher for the 4th criminal division of the German Federal Court of Justice, presented the courts of appeal in Germany and described the procedural requirements and investigation procedure during his lecture.
A follow-up event on the same subject is planned for next year.
From 7 to 9 November 2018, a high-ranking delegation from the Constitutional Council of the Republic of Kazakhstan visited North Rhine-Westphalia to find out about the protection of constitutional and human rights in Germany.
The first ports of call for the working visit were the Administrative Court (“Verfassungsgerichtshof or VerfGH”) and Higher Administrative Court (“Oberverwaltungsgerichtshof or OVG”) for North Rhine-Westphalia in Münster. The delegation was welcomed by the President of both courts, Dr. Ricarda Brandts, and informed about the tasks and responsibilities of the VerfGH and OVG at regional level. OVG judge Holger Wöckel gave a report on administrative jurisdiction in Germany. At the express request of the Kazakh guests, the right of assembly was also explained and was the subject of lively discussions.
The delegation was welcomed to the Ministry of Justice for NRW in Düsseldorf by ministerial advisor Dr. Christian Reitemeier. The presentation of the new law on individual constitutional complaints in NRW, which will come into force on 1 January 2019, was met with great interest. The new provisions were introduced by the author himself, Dr. Andreas Klenke, who is a judge at the OVG Higher Administrative Court.
At the Public Prosecutor’s Office in Wuppertal, Senior Public Prosecutor Wolf-Tilmann Baumert reported on the protection of human rights in criminal proceedings. Jogan Merkel, a member of the Constitutional Council of the Republic of Kazakhstan and strongly involved in the fundamental reforms of the code of criminal procedure and the criminal code of the RK as the long-term First Deputy Prosecutor General of the Republic of Kazakhstan, made the most of the opportunity to obtain comprehensive information on the subject.
To round off the study visit, the participants visited a law firm. Holger Hembach, a lawyer who has been advising on fundamental and human rights and especially on complaints submitted to the ECtHR for the past 20 years, gave a report on his many years of professional experience.
As a follow-up to the working visit, a representative of the Constitutional Council produced an extensive report on the results of the study visit, which has been delivered to the President’s office of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
From 21 to 24 October 2018, the IRZ organised a working visit on “Training for judges” by a high-ranking delegation from the Supreme Judicial Council of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Trier and Mainz in Germany. The Supreme Judicial Council of the Republic of Kazakhstan acts as a guarantor of judicial independence and integrity, playing an important role in the appointment of judges in Kazakhstan, which in turn is carried out by the President. When the law on the Supreme Judicial Council came into effect on 1 January 2016, more authority was passed to the committee so that it can improve and reform the court system within the framework of “100 steps to achieving the five reforms set by the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan”. One of the main foci of the Supreme Judicial Council is on the qualification requirements and prerequisites for candidates applying to become a judge.
During their stay, the delegation visited the conference facilities of the German Judicial Academy in Trier, the Administrative Court in Mainz, the Regional Court in Mainz and the Ministry of Justice for Rhineland-Palatinate.
At the conference facilities of the German Judicial Academy in Trier, the Kazakh guests were received by the Director of the German Judicial Academy, Dr. Stefan Tratz. As well as explaining the structure and organisation of training for judges in Germany, Dr. Tratz also talked about issues concerning the process of internships and prerequisites for being appointed a judge.
During the visit to the Administrative Court of Mainz on the second day, Court President, Dr. Bettina Freimund-Holler, and her Deputy, Dr. Christof Berthold, welcomed the delegation. They explained the tasks and responsibilities of the Administrative Court and answered questions from the Kazakh guests on judicial independence, the selection process and the appointment of judges in Germany.
At the Regional Court of Mainz, the delegation was received by the Court Vice-President, Dr. Ingrid Metzger, who led expert discussions on other issues including the disciplinary process.
Secretary of State Philipp Fernis welcomed the delegation to the Ministry of Justice for Rhineland-Palatinate on the last day of the working visit. Here, issues concerning the selection, employment, appraisal and promotion of judges were looked at in more detail. The delegation was also given a summary of the second judicial state exam.
The members of the delegation were able to develop a deeper insight into the training of judges in Germany during the expert discussions. To conclude, the working visit was a successful and fruitful event for the Kazakh participants.