Topic: Criminal Justice
Making Headway with Pretrial Justice
The provision of effective pretrial justice has in the past not received the attention it merits from both governments and international aid donors. But there are encouraging signs of change.
Fact Sheet: Improving Pretrial Justice in Mexico
Over 40 percent of prisoners in Mexico are awaiting trial. To address the problem, the state of Morelos worked with the Open Society Justice Initiative to establish a program to manage supervised pretrial release.
Coalition on Violence Against Women and Others v. the Attorney-General of Kenya and Others
A group of Kenyan civil society organizations and victims of sexual and gender-based violence have brought a case to the Nairobi High Court against six Kenyan government officials demanding accountability.
Fact Sheet: Improving Pretrial Justice in Malawi
A pilot project in Malawi is demonstrating how legal assistance can be provided in a cost effective way by paralegals.
Fact Sheet: Improving Pretrial Justice in Nigeria
Nigeria’s prisons are notoriously overcrowded. This fact sheet outlines a project launched in 2005 by the NGO REPLACE, aiming to reduce the prison population and shorten the length of pretrial detention.
Fact Sheet: Pretrial Detention and the Risk of Torture
Of the nearly ten million people in detention around the world, those held before trial or conviction are most at risk of torture.
Fact Sheet: How Pretrial Detention Stunts Socioeconomic Development
The excessive and arbitrary use of pretrial detention critically undermines socioeconomic development—and is especially harmful to the poor.
Fact Sheet: Pretrial Justice and Paralegals in Sierra Leone
The majority of Sierra Leone's prison population is in pretrial detention. To reduce the numbers, a local NGO is piloting a prorgam that provides early legal assistance to criminal defendants.
Fact Sheet: Pretrial Detention and Corruption
Locking up prisoners for extended periods while awaiting trial feeds corruption; bribes are needed for food and water, for blankets and even to see a lawyer.
Fact Sheet: Pretrial Detention and Health
The excessive use of pretrial detention leads to overcrowded, dirty, chaotic, and violent environments where pretrial detainees, who have not been convicted, are at risk of contracting disease.
Case Watch: European Court Rules on Torture and Extradition
Two recent cases against Russia illustrate the way the European Court of Human Rights assesses claims that an applicant cannot be extradited to a third country because they would be at risk of torture.
Access to Justice Advances in Ukraine
Ukraine has launched its first comprehensive national legal aid system, providing free legal advice to anyone who cannot afford to pay for a laywer.
The UN Guidelines and Principles on Access to Legal Aid in Criminal Justice Systems
Five reasons why the new UN Guidelines and Principles on Legal Aid are groundbreaking and progressive.
Citizens Against Violence and Others v. the Attorney General of Kenya and Others
More than 400 Kenyans were shot dead by police during the post-election violence in Kenya in early 2008. Victims have brought a class action constitutional case demanding accountability for the killings.
Why Violence in Africa Presents an Existential Threat
Advocates seeking a more open and democratic society in Africa have mostly failed to grasp the extent of the threat posed by violence.
Submission to the UN on Ethnic Profiling in Spain
This submission details the extent and impact of ethnic profiling on minorities in Spain, and how these practices violate international human rights standards.
Why A New Code May Not Improve Police Conduct in Nigeria
Nigeria’s Inspector General of Police has just launched a code of conduct and professional standards for the country’s police force. Will it make a difference?
Fined for Being Roma while Cycling
In a small northern Hungarian village, the local police were singling out local Roma for riding bikes without bells and reflectors. The Hungarian Helsinki Committee responded.
UN General Assembly Enacts Global Standards on Access to Legal Aid
The UN General Assembly has adopted the world's first international instrument for the provision of legal aid, setting out guidelines and principles for ensuring fair trial rights for all, regardless of economic status.
Fact Sheet: Improving Pretrial Justice in Africa
Organizations across the region are working to combat excessive pretrial detention. Find out where and how.