Informing suspects of their rights

June 26, 2017

Under the EU Directive on right to criminal proceedings adopted in 2012, each arrested suspect must be provided with a written letter indicating and detailing their rights in the criminal proceedings. This document may be essential in ensuring a fair investigation and trial for the suspect, as only through understanding their rights can they fully participate in the criminal proceedings.

Therefore the Human Rights Monitoring Institute has conducted research evaluating how the Directive has been transposed to Lithuanian law, and how the letter of rights functions in practice. Also, whether the letter of rights currently used in Lithuania should be revised, so as to ensure that it is easier to understand and thus better performs its function.

Research was conducted by a combination of in-depth desk review of legislation, and surveys with 2 groups of criminal justice practitioners – police officers and defence lawyers, 22 of each – who have extensive experience in criminal proceedings and engage suspects and accused on a daily basis.

See the full research report and the brochure “Understanding your rights in police custody”.