Lawbook change at Advisory Council

The concept-amendment of the Criminal Code was just two weeks ago delivered to the Advisory Council (Raad van Advies), two years after it was presented to Justice-minister David Dick (PAR), says Vice-chairman Frank Kunneman on being asked.

The concept remained all that time with the Justice Department. It will take at least three more months before the Parliament can handle the concept, unless all the formal requirements are met and the RvA does not send the concept back.

In the concept-amendment is included among others the travel-ban as special condition with a conditional punishment for drug couriers caught. This is when the passports are temporarily seized. However, the Supreme Court decided again last week that this is not possible, because the provision is not included in the Antillean legislation. It incites the Public Prosecutor and the Court again to impose imprisonment on couriers, which stresses the scanty cell-capacity. Only when the concept-amendment of the Criminal Code is approved, the taking away of passports can be used again as measure.

The committee presented the concept to the minister of Justice David Dick in December of 2006. Legislation regarding corruption, terrorism, computer criminality, and human trafficking and thus also the seizing of passports are some of the items that are included. The current Criminal Code is from more than 70 years ago. The committee was therefore established in 2003. The committee was led by the late presiding judge Luis de Lannoy. A few judicial gaps were stopped and the code will meet international treaties that the Antilles have entered.

Kunneman cannot tell why the concept had stayed all that time with the department of Justice. The Terrorism item has meanwhile been lifted separately from the code for consideration and finally approved by Parliament. The RvA will now have to work on the reconsideration. Kunneman doesn’t know how long that’s going to take. It usually takes about three months. “It is of course voluminous, but on the other hand it also requires some urgency”, says Kunneman. It has the full attention of the RvA anyway.

(Source: National newspaper Amigoe)

6 December, 2008



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