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Crime probes must avoid errors: NA

Update: February, 28/2015 - 09:43
Deputy Minister of Public Security Le Quy Vuong at the NA's session. — Photo Phuong Hoa

HA NOI (VNS) — The National Assembly Standing Committee yesterday discussed the draft Law on Criminal Investigations.

The NA Judicial Committee asked the drafting committee to make sure the Penal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code were in harmony.

Phan Trung Ly, chairman of the NA Law Committee, Nguyen Doan Khanh, deputy head of the Party Central Committee's Internal Affairs Commission, and Ksor Phuoc, Chairman of the NA Ethnic Affairs Committee, asked the draft committee to adhere to the Politburo's instruction to retain status quo with the existing system of investigation agencies.

However, they stressed the need to define differences between investigative activities described in the Criminal Procedure Code and actual intelligence practices.

The NA Judicial Committee asked the drafting committee to focus more on the effectiveness of the investigative activities to avoid making errors or false judgements.

Ly also asked the draft committee to strictly adhere to the 2013 Constitution, particularly Article 31, which says that a person has to be deemed innocent until guilt is established by legal proceedings and a sentence is awarded.

The accused should not be considered criminals, he reiterated.

Khanh stressed the importance of differentiating the functions and jurisdictions of security agencies under different Government agencies.

Nguyen Van Thuan, deputy chief judge of the People's Supreme Court, said there was a need to separate administrative management from prosecutorial investigations.

In the afternoon, the NA Standing Committee discussed the draft law on custody and temporary detention.

The National Assembly Committee on Judicial Affairs stressed that the human rights of those subjected to temporary custody and detention procedures should ensured as guaranteed by the Constitution.

Members of the NA Standing Committee said that the draft law should clearly define the difference between temporary custody and detention because citizens in these categories are to be treated differently.

Kso Phuoc said noted that people placed in temporary custody are typically guilty of just administrative violations and other minor offences, while those who are detained are usually deemed to have committed more serious crimes.

Thuan also suggested there should be separate facilities for holding people in detention and temporary custody.

The NA Judicial Affairs Committee emphasised again that people in temporary custody as well as detention have to be considered innocent until they are dealt with by the court.

Meanwhile, their personal safety should be assured, as also their access to information, healthcare and legal assistance. They should also be allowed to meet their relatives, the committee said.

Head of the NA Law Committee Lysaid citizens should not be placed in leg shackles irrespective of their being placed in temporary custody or detention.

Nguyen Hai Phong, deputy director of the Viet Nam's Supreme People's Procuracy, admitted that several people in temporary custody or detention had been subjected to physial abuse recently. The draft lasw shold prevent this from happening, he said.

NA Vice Chairwoman of Tong Thi Phong said that those drafting the law must review Viet Nam human rights commitmentsand ensure that they provide a legal frameork to meet all such obligations. — VNS



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