PROCEDURE IN CASES CONCERNING YOUNG PERSONS


Procedure incases Concerning Young Persons

Art.171- Principle.

Criminal case concerning young persons shall be tried in accordance with the provisions of the Chapter.

Art.172-institution of proceedings.

(1) In any case where a young person is involved. He shall be taken immediately before the nearest Woreda Court by the police, the public prosecutor, the parent or guardian or the complainant.

(2) The court shall ask the person bringing the young person to state the particulars and the witnesses, if any, of the alleged offence or to make a formal complaint, where appropriate, and such statement or complaint shall be recorded . The court may give the police instructions as to the manner in which investigations should be made.

(3) Where the accusation relates to an office punished with rigorous imprisonment exceeding ten years or with death (Art.173 penal Code) the court shall direct the public prosecutor to frame a charge.

(4) Where the case requires to be adjourned or to be transferred to a superior court for trial, the young person shall be handed over to the care of his parents, guardian or relative and in default of any such person to a reliable person who shall be responsible for ensuring his attendance at the trial The witnesses shall be bound over to appear at the trial.

Art.173-Summunig of young person’s guardian.

Where the young person is brought before the court and his parent, guardian or other person in loco parentis is not present, the court shall immediately inquire whether such person exists and shall summon such person to appear without delay.

Art.174-Young person may be assisted by counsel.

The court shall appoint an advocate to assist the young person where;

(a) No parent, guardian or other person in loco parentis appears to represent the young person, or

(b) The young person is young is charged with an offence punishable; with rigorous imprisonment exceeding ten years or with death.

Art.175-Removal of young person from chambers.

Where any evidence or comments are to be given or made which it is undesirable that the young person should hear, he shall be removed from the chambers while such evidence or comments are being given or made.

Art.176-Hearing

(1) Where the young person is brought before the court all the proceedings shall be held in chambers. Nobody shall be present at any hearing except witnesses, experts, the parent or guardian or representatives of welfare organizations. The public prosecutor shall be present at any hearing in the High Court.

(2) All proceedings shall be conducted in an informal manner.

(3) The accusation or complain under Art.172 (2) or the charge under Art.172(3) shall be read out to the young person and he shall be asked what he has to say in answer to such accusation or charge.

(4) If it is clear to the court from what the accused says that he fully understands and does not admits the accusation or charge, the court shall record what the young person has said and may convict him immediately.

(5) If it is clear to the court from what the accused says that he fully understands and does not admit the accusation or charge, the court shall inquire as to what witnesses should be called to support such accusation or charge. The young person, his representative or advocate may cause any witnesses to be summoned.

(6) All witnesses shall be examined by the court and may thereupon be cross examined by the defence. All depositions shall be recorded.

(7) When the evidence is concluded, the defence may sum up and there—after the court shall give judgment.

Art.177-Judgment.

(1) The judgment shall specify the provisions of the law on which it is based. Where the young person is found not guilty, he shall be acquitted and set free forthwith. Where he is found guilty, the court shall impose the appropriate measure or penalty under Art.162. et seq. Penal Code.

(2) The court may call before it any person or representative of any institution with a view to obtaining information concerning the character and antecedents of the young person so as to arrive at a decision which is in the best interest of the young person.

(3) After these persons have been heard, the defence may reply and call his witnesses as to character, who shall be interrogated by the court and thereupon the defence shall address the court as to sentence.

(4) Judgment shall be given as in ordinary cases. The court shall explain its decision to the young person and warm him against further misconduct.

Asdrt.178-Order which may be made against parents and guardians.

Where it thinks fit the court may warn, admonish or blame the parents or other person legally responsible for the young person where it appears that they have failed to carry their duties.

Art.179-Cost of upkeep of young person in certain circumstances.

(1) The parents or other person legally responsible for the care of a young person may be ordered to bear all or part of the cost of his upkeep and training where owing to their failure to exercise proper care and guardian ship the court has ordered the young person to be sent to the care of another person or to a corrective or curative institution.

(2) The scope and duration of such obligation shall be specified in the judgment.

Art.180-Variation or modification of order made in respect of young person.

Any court which has sentenced a young person to a measure may at any time of its own motion or on the application of the young person, his legal representative or the person or institution to which he was entrusted, vary or modify such order if the interest of the young person so requires.

 

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