Protection of Victims of Sexual Crimes PDF Print E-mail

 

The new Act on Victims of Crime has been published in the Collection of Laws. It came to full force and effect on August 1, 2013.

 

Subject matter of this Act is aimed at defining the rights of a victim as an entity requiring special care on the part of the state, regulation of providing financial assistance to victims by the state and establishing a legal framework for cooperation between the state and organization providing assistance to victims of crime.

 

A victim means a natural person, who suffered or allegedly suffered bodily harm, material or non-material harm, or at the expense of which the perpetrator enriched himself. In case the victim was killed by the criminal act, his relative in direct line, sibling, adoptive child, adoptive parent, spouse or registered partner or companion, if he is a close person, are also considered to be victims.

 

Especially vulnerable victim is understood as a:

-     child,

-     person with a physical, mental or psychic handicap or sensory dysfunction that in connection with various obstacles can prevent full end effective fulfillment of oneself in the society in comparison to other persons,

-     victim of a criminal offense of trafficking in human beings (Section 168 of Criminal Code),

-     victim of a criminal act against human dignity in sexual area or a criminal act that encompassed violence or threat of violence, if there is an increased risk of causing secondary harm to the victim especially with regard to his age, gender, race, nationality, sexual orientation, religion, medical condition, intellectual development, ability to express oneself, current situation in life or with regard to the relationship with the suspect of the crime or dependence on such person.

 

Any person, who feels to be a victim of a committed crime, must be treated as a victim unless it is found otherwise or unless it is a clear abuse of the position of the victim according to the Act on Victims of Crime. The position of the victim is not affected by the fact whether the perpetrator was found or convicted.

 
Police of the Czech Republic, authorities involved in criminal proceedings and other public authorities, entities listed in the record of providers of assistance of victims of crime, medical care providers, experts, interpreters, defense counsels and media have an obligation to respect the personality and dignity of the victim, to approach him with courtesy and care and to oblige him as much as the circumstances allow it. In relation to the victim they proceed with regard to his age, medical condition and psychic state, cognitive maturity and cultural identity so that the harm caused to the victim by the criminal offense was not amplified or so that the victim was not subject to secondary harm.

 
Police of the Czech Republic, authorities involved in criminal proceedings and entities listed in the registry of providers of assistance to victims of crime are obliged to comprehensively inform the victims of their rights and allow them to fully exercise these rights. They are obliged to do this repeatedly upon a request of the victim.

 

Rights of victims of crime include the following:

 

- right to expert assistance (Section 4 - 6)

- right to information (Section 7 - 13)

- right to protection against impending threat (Section 14)

- right to protection of privacy (Section 15 - 16)

- right to protection from secondary harm (Section 17 - 22)

- right to financial assistance (Section 23 - 37).

 

The Ministry of Justice supports the operation of entities providing assistance to victims of crime by granting subsidies from the state budget, which only the accredited entities may reach. Any entity, which plans to provide assistance to victims of crime according to the Act on Victims of Crime, must be accredited for one or two services, which are provision of legal information and restorative programs. Psychological and social counselling services may be provided to the victims by entities that acquired authorization for providing social counselling and social prevention services on the basis of registration decision made according to the Act regulating provision of social services.

 

The Ministry of Justice keeps a registry of providers of assistance to victims of crime.

 
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