Working Visit of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the subject "Criminal offences against the judiciary and penitentiary regulations“

The Kazakh delegation at the Regional Court of Munich I
The Kazakh delegation at the Regional Court of Munich I

A study trip was organised in cooperation with the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Sonthofen, Kempten and Munich from 16 to 20 October 2017 on the subject “Criminal offences against the judiciary and penitentiary regulations”, which was attended by five judges from different regions in Kazakhstan.

The programme started at the local court of Sonthofen with an introduction into how criminal procedures work in Germany. Afterwards, the focus was on offences relating to making false statements and forging deeds as well as on giving false evidence in the course of proceedings in the German criminal procedure. The guests from Kazakhstan also had the opportunity to attend two court trials. In this context they found it particularly interesting that a guardianship judge was heard as a witness. The laws of the Republic of Kazakhstan do not provide for a judge being summoned as a witness.

At the public prosecutor’s office in Kempten the speakers reported, amongst other things, on aiding a perpetrator of an offence, favouritism and punishable acts in office (bribery, perversion of the course of justice) and criminal offences against law and order.

The deputy head of the police department of Sonthofen, Kurt Islar, presented the amended law on the tightened provisions for criminal offences against police officers and other rescue units which came into force in spring 2017. He also gave an account of punishable acts against law and order from the police's point of view.

The delegation learned about the work of a criminal division in charge of executing sentences at the regional court of Kempten. This topic met with particular interest because there is no respective institution in Kazakhstan.

On the last day of their study trip, the Kazakh judges learned at the regional court of Munich how preventive custody is regulated in the German criminal law and which police measures a German court can take during the hearing.

The successful cooperation with the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan will be continued as early as in November.

Round table on the reform of the code of criminal procedure in the Republic of Kazakhstan

Gabit Mirazov, Senior Public Prosecutor in Almaty; Igor Rogov, Chairman of the RK Constitutional Council;  Helene Philippsen, IRZ; Prof. Dr. Bijan Nowrousian, University of Applied Sciences for Public Administration and Management; Reinhard Müller, Deputy Director of the local court of Rendsburg (from left to right)
Gabit Mirazov, Senior Public Prosecutor in Almaty; Igor Rogov, Chairman of the RK Constitutional Council; Helene Philippsen, IRZ; Prof. Dr. Bijan Nowrousian, University of Applied Sciences for Public Administration and Management; Reinhard Müller, Deputy Director of the local court of Rendsburg (from left to right)

On 15 September 2017, a round table discussion on the reform of the code of criminal procedure in the Republic of Kazakhstan was held in Almaty.

The event began with a presentation of the most important new developments, most of which involve changes to investigation proceedings, by Deputy Prosecutor General, Marat Akhmetzhanov. Undercover investigations, for example, must in future be ordered by a court. The period of provisional arrest will be reduced to 48 hours for adults and 24 hours for minors. Advances will be made on a step-by-step basis to increase the skills of investigative magistrates (e.g. for closing proceedings). An accelerated procedure for dealing with criminal offences will be introduced.

There were some words of criticism from the Chairman of the Republican Collegium of Lawyers, Anuar Tugel, who demanded, amongst other things, the early involvement of defence lawyers in the investigation process.

High-ranking representatives of the following judicial and government institutions took part in the meeting:

  • President’s office of the Republic of Kazakhstan,
  • Supreme Court,
  • Constitutional Council,
  • Public Prosecutor General's Office and
  • Ministry of Internal Affairs.

The Collegium of Lawyers, the OSCE, NGOs and the Al-Farabi University were also represented.

The IRZ was represented by the speakers Reinhard Müller, Deputy Director of the local court of Rendsburg, and Prof. Dr. Bijan Nowrousian from the University of Applied Sciences for Public Administration and Management of North Rhine-Westphalia. They gave lectures on the activities of investigative magistrates in Germany and on ensuring a fair trial and the rights of the defendant in Germany.

It should be noted that the changes in the code of criminal procedure in the Republic of Kazakhstan allow for enhanced rights for the accused, but that the role of the defence counsel in the investigative proceedings needs to be strengthened still further.

High-ranking delegation from the Republic of Kazakhstan visit Frankfurt/Main and Wiesbaden on the subject of the “criminal investigation procedure”

Within the context of the development of new legislation for public prosecutors, which is currently being prepared in Kazakhstan, a working visit on the subject of the “criminal investigation procedure” took place on 23 and 24 May 2017 in cooperation with the Public Prosecutor General's Office of the Republic of Kazakhstan (RK).

In view of the great interest in German legislation and legislative practice, the delegation was made up of high-ranking representatives of various authorities. The following institutions were represented:

  • President’s office
  • Constitutional Council
  • Public Prosecutor General’s Office
  • Supreme Court
  • Ministry of Internal Affairs
  • Parliament
  • Civil Service and Anti-Corruption Agency
  • National Security Committee
  • State Revenue Committee at the RK Ministry of Finance

Within the framework of the working visit, talks were held at the police headquarters, Public Prosecutor’s Office and at the local court, all in Frankfurt/Main, and at the Hessian Ministry of Justice in Wiesbaden.

The direct and practically-oriented exchange of experiences with public prosecutors, judges and police officers was particularly important to the Kazakh partners. This provided the delegation with an opportunity to learn at first hand about how the criminal investigation procedure works in Germany.

Further consultations on the application of the new standards under the code of criminal proceedings of Kazakhstan are planned in cooperation with the Public Prosecutor General’s Office throughout the year.