05/08/2022 09:01

Cases not to prosecute for criminal liability in Vietnam

Cases not to prosecute for criminal liability in Vietnam

"I caught my neighbor stealing my chickens, so I reported him to the police. However, the police said they could not prosecute him for criminal liability. So can I ask which cases not to prosecute for criminal liability in Vietnam?" – Hoang Quan (Long An)

Pursuant to the provisions of Article 157 of the Criminal Procedure Code, cases of justifications of the decision not to press criminal charges:

1. Criminal acts do not exist

After the competent authority conducts verification, it concludes that the information about the crime is incorrect, there is no such thing as the received information, or there is an incident but there is no sign of a crime.

2. Acts do not constitute crime

Constituting a crime is a collection of specific legal signs for each crime, which is the basis for criminal prosecution. Acts that do not constitute a crime are acts that do not satisfy the legal signs of a specific criminal composition specified in the Criminal Code. For example, the act of stealing but the value of the stolen property has not reached the level specified in Article 173 of the Criminal Code to constitute a crime.

3. Persons committing dangerous acts against the society have not reached the age of criminal responsibility

According to the provisions of Article 12 of the 2015 Penal Code, persons aged full 16 years or older must bear penal liability for all crimes. Persons aged full 14 years or older but under 16 years old are only criminally responsible for a number of crimes such as murder, rape, robbery, etc.

4. Persons whose criminal acts have been sentenced or lawsuits have been dismissed validly

According to the principle that no one is convicted twice for the same crime, once the crime has been tried and sentenced, the competent authority is not allowed to prosecute the second criminal case.

5. The prescriptive period for criminal prosecution passes

The statute of limitations for criminal prosecution is understood as the time limit prescribed by law to be allowed to prosecute criminal liability for a particular crime. Therefore, when that time limit expires, the offender will not be prosecuted criminal liability anymore. The statute of limitations for this search is specified in Article 27 of the Criminal Code 2015, specifically:

- 05 years for less serious crimes;

- 10 years for serious crimes;

- 15 years for very serious crimes;

- 20 years for particularly serious crimes.

6. General amnesty has been granted

Amnesty is a special leniency measure of the State, decided by the National Assembly on occasions of important national events. The content of a general amnesty is to completely forgive certain types of crimes with a series of offenders. Criminals that are granted amnesty are not allowed to prosecute criminal cases. If the case is in the process of prosecution, the investigation and trial will be suspended.

7. The person causing peril against the society is deceased, unless other persons must undergo reopening procedure

The purpose of prosecuting the case is to find out the truth about the offense, to educate the violators to a sense of obeying the law and the rules of life, to prevent them from committing new crimes. So when the offender is dead, except for the case where a retrial is required for another person, the purpose of the prosecution is no longer there.

8. The crime victim or its representative does not petition for charges against offences as defined in Section 1 of Article 134, 135, 136, 138, 139, 141, 143, 155, 156 and 226 of the Criminal Code

According to the provisions of Article 155 of the Criminal Procedure Code, the following crimes may only be prosecuted in criminal cases at the request of the victim or the victim's representative who is under 18 years old or has weaknesses: mentally or physically or deceased including:

- The crime of deliberately inflicting bodily harm upon another person

- Crime of deliberately inflicting bodily harm upon another people under provocation

- Crime of deliberately inflicting bodily harm because of unjustified force in capturing criminals

- Crime of involuntary infliction of bodily harm upon others

- Crime of Involuntary infliction of bodily harm because of professional misconduct or breach of administrative rules

- Crime of rape

- Crime of sexual abuse

- Crime of insulting another person

- Crime of slander

Nguyen Sang

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