Aggrieved person

Rights of the aggrieved person in criminal proceedings

The aggrieved person has a number of rights in criminal proceedings. Their knowledge and consistent use can significantly help him or her to achieve a positive result in criminal proceedings, whether it is material compensation for the harm caused or at least moral satisfaction in the form of punishment of the perpetrator.

In particular, the aggrieved person is entitled to the following in the context of criminal proceedings:

  1. To make proposals for the completion of evidence

  2. To inspect files

  3. To participate in the negotiation of a plea bargain

  4. To attend the main trial and the public hearing on the appeal or on the approval of the plea bargain

  5. To make a statement on the case before the end of the proceedings

The victim also has other opportunities to influence the outcome of the criminal proceedings or how to intervene in the offender's life. These include the following:

  1. Its consent is conditional on the approval of the settlement, which is one of the so-called diversions. It is an alternative way of ending criminal proceedings which leads to the termination of the prosecution of the offender and the preservation of his clean criminal record. Without the consent of aggrieved person, a similar institution - conditional discontinuance of prosecution - can be used. This method, however, entails the imposition of a probationary period (six months to two years) during which the accused remains under the threat of continued prosecution.

  2. The aggrieved person (if he or she has made a claim for compensation for damages or non-pecuniary loss or for the payment of unjust enrichment) may appeal against the judgment of the court of first instance on the grounds that the verdict on compensation for pecuniary loss or non-pecuniary loss or on the payment of unjust enrichment is incorrect (but may not appeal against the verdict on guilt and sentence).

  3. In some cases, a criminal prosecution can only be brought (and a criminal prosecution already instituted continued) with the consent of the aggrieved person. These are situations where of specific offences and the prosecution is brought against someone who, in relation to the aggrieved person, is a person against whom the aggrieved person, as a witness, would have the right to refuse to give evidence. That is to say, against a relative in the direct line of descent, sibling, adoptive parent, spouse, partner or companion or other persons in a family or similar relationship. Similarly, in the case of rape under section 185(1), (2) of the Criminal Code, against one who is or was at the time of the commission of the offence a spouse, partner or partner in relation to the victim.