Policemen accused by Prosecutors’ Office of violating the legislation on the administrative liability of minors
The General Public Prosecutor’s Office (PG) monitored the way the legislation concerning the administrative liability of minors is observed in Moldova and revealed that the law enforcement bodies often admit actions which run counter to the laws. The police for example use to initiate legal proceedings in the case of the persons who didn’t reach the age of administrative liability. The non-compliance of police’s actions with the legal provisions concerning the administrative liability of minors generates serious violations of children’s rights and liberties and ignores the basic principle of the juvenile justice – the highest interest of the child, a principle that was consecrated in important international documents and guaranteed by the Constitution and the domestic laws, a press release from the General Prosecutor’s Office reads. According to PG, an imposing number of administrative procedures have been stopped because official reports on infractions did not meet all the legal requirements. This fact proves the superficial attitude of policemen concerning the initiation of procedures. Many of administrative cases were stopped due to insufficient evidence, including the characteristics of minors, explanations of class masters, teachers and parents concerning the conduct of the children. Other problems occurred due to the incomplete data on the offenders, witnesses, injured parties and unsigned official reports. According to the public prosecutors, policemen also commit violations of the administrative legislation at the stage of the application of administrative sanctions. Fining the minors often leads to impediments in the enforcement of administrative sanctions, given the fact that the young wrongdoers have no earnings of their own. Public prosecutors discovered multiple cases of the application of detention in custody to minors as part of proceedings concerning the administrative contraventions. The official reports concerning the administrative seize of minors does not always contain the exact time of the arrest, a fact which creates doubts concerning the respect of the legal term of detaining in custody. The verification also discovered that in several cases the reports do not contain information about parents or guardians, which means that parents were not notified about the detention in custody of their child and they did not participate in the procedural activities prescribed by the Code on Administrative Contraventions. It has also been established that many children are taken to police stations for identification, these measures also involving violations. The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child stipulates that the children are subject to special legal protection and no child shall be deprived of his or her liberty unlawfully or arbitrarily.