You can report a crime by calling the police emergency number 112 (if you also urgently need police assistance), submitting a written report at the nearest police station or emailing a report to the appropriate police prefecture. More information on how to report a crime is available here.
After you have reported a crime, you will be contacted and informed about any further procedures (e.g. you will be asked to give testimony, provide information on possible witnesses, help with collecting evidence, etc.). If necessary, you will also receive information on possible victim support and other protection measures.
After your questioning, write down the number of the criminal matter and the investigator responsible for the case. This will make it easier for you to request information from the police at a later date.
You have the right to have an advocate present during the proceedings. If you do not have the means to hire one, you may make a request to the court for state legal aid.
All victims who are minors whose interests are in conflict with those of their legal representatives are entitled to state legal aid free of charge.
Victims and witnesses are entitled to compensation for expenses incurred or income not received because of the criminal proceedings. For example, you can claim for travelling expenses or loss of earnings incurred from going to give evidence. To claim expenses, notify the authority that summoned you and you will receive instructions on how to submit your claim.
When criminal proceedings are terminated, a copy of the relevant ruling will immediately be sent to you or your representative. As a victim you can request access to the criminal file within 10 days from receiving the ruling terminating the criminal proceedings. Within those 10 days, you are also entitled to request that the prosecutor’s office review the ruling.
As a victim, you are a party to the trial on equal terms with the other parties and are entitled to be involved in the trial.
If a crime has been committed against you, then you are a victim in the criminal proceedings. However, you are also entitled to file a civil action as part of the same proceedings.
Under the Code of Criminal Procedure, a victim is entitled to:
A victim is required to:
You are entitled to make statements and express your opinion during the trial. You have the right to give testimony in court if the prosecution requests that you be questioned.
The court will inform you about the time and place of the court sessions and you will also be informed about the court ruling, which will be sent to you by post unless you are personally present in court when the ruling is pronounced.
You are entitled to examine the court files in the prosecutor’s office after the preliminary investigation is completed or when the criminal proceedings are terminated. The prosecutor’s office will inform you about this right and provide instructions on how you can examine the files.
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