The Impact of Salduz in France: Making Custodial Legal Advice More Effective
92 Criminal Justice Matters 14-15 (Forthcoming)
5 Pages Posted: 10 Apr 2013
Date Written: April 8, 2013
Like many other jurisdictions, France was reluctant to consider the ruling in Salduz v Turkey (2008) as applicable to its own criminal procedure, given the regime of safeguards in place, most notably judicial supervision. However, after defence lawyers litigated successfully in the criminal and appeal courts, as well as the constitutional council (Conseil constitutionnel), in 2011 France was finally obliged to make provision, for the first time, for lawyers to be present during the police interrogation of suspects. This is a significant change in the pre-trial investigation regime. The public prosecutor’s responsibility to oversee the police detention and interrogation of suspects is no longer regarded as justification for the exclusion of defence lawyers from this phase of the investigation. However, although the presence of the lawyer during the garde à vue is a significant improvement to defence rights, there are still concerns that the right can be delayed and that the lawyer's role is constrained to that of passive observer.
Keywords: comparative law, French law, defence lawyers, criminal law
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation