2019-07-29

Code of Criminal Procedure Amendment Passed

On 3 July 2019, Taiwan's Legislative Yuan passed an amendment of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
 
The current provision of Art. 116-2 of the Code stipulates that, in granting a suspension of detention, the court may set conditions with which the convicted defendant must comply, including: (1) report to the court or public prosecutor periodically, (2) no threat of causing personal injury or property damage made to or action taken against the victim, witness, public official in charge of the investigation or the trial, (3) if suspension of detention is granted, no activities unrelated to medical treatment are permitted without the consent of the Court or Public Prosecutor, and (4) other activities the court deems suitable.
 
The amendment addresses  the issue of suspension of detention granted during the trial stage, where the Court may order the defendant to be present at the Court on the date that the judgment is pronounced.  The aim is to prevent the defendant from jumping bail.  Additionally, the amendment establishes four other mechanisms to prevent defendants from jumping bail, including (1) control by adequate technical devices, (2) restriction to domicile, residence, or certain area unless with permission of the Court or Prosecutor, (3) handing over passports, travel documents, or notifing the relevant authority not to issue passports or travel documents, and (4) prohibition against disposing of specific property without permission of the Court or the Prosecutor.
 
Additionally, to prevent defendants from jumping bail, Art. 469 stipulates, “If the defendant is sentenced to the death penalty, life imprisonment, or an imprisonment no less than two years, a prosecutor may arrest the accused without a warrant if there are facts sufficient to justify an apprehension that the defendant may abscond.”
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