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EU Directive on Victim’s Rights adopted

The EU Council of Ministers last week adopted a new EU directive that sets out minimum rights for victims of crime, wherever they are in the EU.

“Nobody wants to fall victim to a crime, but if it happens, people should be safe in the knowledge they will have the same basic rights everywhere in the European Union,” said Vice-President Viviane Reding, the EU’s Justice Commissioner.

The new Directive will ensure that, in all 27 EU countries:

• victims are treated with respect and police, prosecutors and judges are trained to properly deal with them;
• victims get information on their rights and their case in a way they understand;
• victim support exists in every Member State;
• victims can participate in proceedings if they want and are helped to attend the trial;
• vulnerable victims are identified – such as children, victims of rape, or those with disabilities – and are properly protected; and
• victims are protected while police investigate the crime and during court proceedings.