- Published: February 18, 2019
On 6 and 7 February 2019 the IRZ, together with the Moroccan Public Prosecutor’s Office in Marrakesh, organised a seminar on „An introduction to toxicology“. This took place as part of the project on “Cooperation with the Kingdom of Morocco in the field of legal and forensic medicine, with particular consideration paid to the concerns of the Moroccan justice system” project, which the IRZ is coordinating between 2017 and 2019 as part of the project financed by the Federal Foreign Office (Transformation Partnerships with North Africa/the Middle East).
As in the previous year, some 30 public prosecutors and forensic scientists received basic training in the work of toxicological laboratories. +The objective was to show the possibilities provided by toxicology in investigative work. Urine, blood, hair and organs can be used to make statements about the possible cause of death by various substances.
The two German toxicologists André Niebel und Lena Westendorf from the Institute of Legal and Forensic Medicine at the Charité Berlin were invited as experts. They talked about the significance and methods of toxicological examinations for clarifying deaths with the help of examples from a large number of selected death cases. Representatives of the Moroccan Sûreté Nationale and the Gendarmerie Royale also gave lectures about the work in the toxicological laboratories of their institutes.
In Morocco, there are currently only three laboratories (two in Rabat and one in Casablanca) where samples can be examined. The inappropriate storage of samples during transport is therefore a big problem.
Many participants made the most of the discussions to address current problems in the cooperation between legal and forensic medicine, toxicology and the Public Prosecutor’s Office. A particular point of criticism was the fact that toxicologists are not provided with any information about legal and forensic reports after being entrusted with an examination by the Public Prosecutor’s Office, which makes their work much harder, whereas in Germany, legal and forensic medicine and toxicology work hand in hand. The lively discussions show that this is an important topic and that there is further need of discussions and advice.
Another seminar is due to take place on this subject in Tanger at the end of 2019.
Expert discussions in Rabat on “Incorporating and developing a professional code for forensic scientists”
- Published: January 4, 2019
On 28 November 2018, expert discussions involving the Moroccan Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Moroccan Institute of Legal and Forensic Medicine (SMML) were held on the subject of “Incorporating and developing a professional code for forensic scientists”.
The event was part of a three-year project, which the IRZ is leading between 2017 and 2019 together with the Institute of Legal and Forensic Medicine at Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, supported by the German Foreign Office as part of the Transformation Partnerships with North Africa/the Middle East.
The aim of this project is to support independent legal and forensic medicine in Morocco by providing continued training and education for forensic scientists and to improve the cooperation between the justice system and legal and forensic medicine by providing continued training for judges and public prosecutors in legal and forensic medicine.
These expert talks were a one-day consolidation event, to which selected Moroccan forensic scientists and public prosecutors were invited.
The main subject of the discussions was the current draft legislation on a professional code for forensic scientists in Morocco, which is due to be approved next year.
During the discussions, the focus was on the following topics in particular:
- Responsibilities, rights and duties in forensic medicine,
- the registration of forensic scientists,
- provisions for autopsies and the production of reports,
- liability and criminal sanctions and
- regulations for general practitioners working in legal and forensic medicine.
New approaches to further education in legal and forensic medicine, which are also aimed at general practitioners, were also discussed. Specifically, the discussions centred on the establishment of new centres of legal and forensic medicine, where trained general practitioners can carry out simple forensic procedures.
The following experts were appointed by the IRZ to take part:
- Prof. Dr. Michael Klintschar, Director of the Institute of Legal and Forensic Medicine at the Hanover medical school,
- Prof. Dr. Ahmed Belhouss, Director of the Institute of Legal and Forensic Medicine, Morocco, and
- Zakaria Arousi, Head of criminal sanctions and judicial affairs at the Moroccan Public Prosecutor’s Office.
- Published: December 21, 2018
On 11 and 12 December 2018, the IRZ, together with the General Delegation for Prison Administration and Reintegration (DGAPR), organised a first seminar on “Governance – Communication and Planning Strategies” in the Moroccan capital Rabat. The event was held as part of the project on “Cooperation with the Kingdom of Morocco on Prison Management”, which is being coordinated by the IRZ between 2017 and 2019 and supported by the German Foreign Office.
Two experts from the Berlin prison system supported the IRZ in carrying out the seminar:
- Senior government official Ingo-Uwe Schümann, an adviser in Department III for IT control and digitalisation of the Berlin prison system, and
- Martin Guder, social education worker and head of prison section at the Tegel prison.
In their welcome addresses the representative of the DGAPR, Reolonane Koutane, and Antje Gade, Head of the Legal and Consulate Department at the German Embassy in Rabat, praised the cooperation between Germany and Morocco, represented here by the IRZ and the DGAPR. Both countries can benefit from their mutual experience, in particular with regard to the deradicalisation of prisoners, a topic of increasing importance in Germany.The main topics of the seminar were:
- The development of planning capacities involving external players,
- internal and external communication strategies as well as
- digital networking in the context of a decentralisation of administrative structures.
The German experts saw many similarities between the development in Morocco and the development in the German prison system during the last decades. By retaining their function as an authority the penal institutions have gained more responsibility and autonomy. The decentralisation of administrative structures in Morocco is not that strongly developed as yet, but the constitution of 2011 stipulates its promotion.
The DGAPR’s tasks
The DGAPR has been running all areas of the prison system independently since 2008. Apart from the central administration in Rabat, the authority has regional offices which supervise the individual prisons. The regional and central administrations as well as the heads of prison and their officers exchange information at meetings which take place at different intervals. However, the networking between the individual penal institutions and with the central administration is still insufficiently developed.
The two German experts explained in their lectures how the Berlin Senate Administration monitors the compliance with the legal framework conditions by the prison within its supervisory function. The control instruments comprise:
- General action guidelines,
- strategy planning,
- annual programme planning of individual measures,
- target agreements concluded individually with each penal institution,
- the development and measuring of KPIs.
They added, however, that within the legal framework the penal institutions had a certain discretionary power guaranteed by the constitution. Direct communication was ensured also in Germany by means of regular meetings between the heads of administration and of the prisons.
Based on the findings of this seminar, a communication and planning strategy will be developed in the form of action guidelines for the DGAPR by a working group during the seminars scheduled in 2019.