November 28, 2015


The laws of criminal procedure are introduced to preserve the balance, throughout the process from the reporting of an offence through to the final judgment, between the fundamental rights due to the accused and the interests of the public in the criminal process. That any person suspected or accused of a crime is to be presumed innocent until proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt; that he (she) is to be insulated from unwarranted investigation and prosecution; that, as needed, select persons shall always be assisted by counsel; that due process be given the accused in the investigation, prosecution and trial stages in a speedy and just manner are some of the rights that all persons suspected of accused of any offence under Eritrean laws are accorded.

The Code will simultaneously accommodate the interests of the public through the establishment of clearly demarcated lines of function, authority and relationship among the various institutions that represent the interest of the public in the criminal process, viz. the courts, the prosecution department, the police, the prison authorities and other similarly constituted organs, by also allowing the public, especially the alleged victims of crimes, in actively participating in the overall objective of prevention and swift prosecution of offences.

The Transitional Criminal Procedure Code of Eritrea, most of the provisions of which have been incorporated into this Code, has thus far served as the testing ground for the establishment of the criminal procedure that we have always believed is deserved by the people and inhabitants of Eritrea. The experience earned in the practice of the Transitional Criminal Procedure Code of Eritrea and the practices of other jurisdictions was instrumental in designing this Code. An effort was also exerted in incorporating some acceptable and basic principles and perspectives in the age-long indigenous laws, traditions and practices similarly extant in the various communities of the Eritrean people as are related to criminal procedure.

The enactment and active functioning of this Code assumes the further institutionalization under law of the various organs of adjudication and law enforcement as well as the continued and enhanced public awareness of the basic tenets of Eritrean criminal law and procedure. To function in tune with the Penal Code and other relevant regulations of Eritrea, this Criminal Procedure Code of the State of Eritrea will ensure the aggregated objectives of ensuring peaceful and secured life under law, the prevention of and willingness to fight crime as well as the just treatment of offenders.

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