Russian government approves bill extending jury trials to more cases
MOSCOW, August 18 (RAPSI) – Russia’s government has approved a bill envisaging a wider use of the jury trial institution for certain demographic groups, according to the statement published on the website of the Cabinet of Ministers on Friday.
The bill introduces amendments to the Criminal Procedure Code of Russia aimed to implement the decisions of the Constitutional Court regarding cases in the framework of which the most severe punishments would not envisage a life imprisonment or death penalty. According to the bill, these cases may be reviewed by a jury panel. Authors of the bill also propose to restrict jury panels from reviewing criminal cases against people under the age of 18.
Under the current law, women as well as men over the age of 65 cannot be sentenced to exceptional measure of punishment and therefore their cases can’t be reviewed by a jury trial. The Court found that provision contradicts the Constitution and ruled to lift the restriction in order to ensure equal access to justice.