Protection of safety of physical or psychological well-being of victims, witnesses and families

Bulgaria

Bulgaria - Criminal Procedure Code 2006 (2011) EN

BULGARIA - PENAL PROCEDURE CODE

Part two. EVIDENCING

Chapter thirteen. PROOFS

Section II. Voice Proofs

Art. 123. (1) The prosecutor, the reporting judge or the court, on the witness’ request or with the latter’s consent shall take measures to protect him/her, where there are sufficient reasons to presume that, as a result of testifying, there has arisen or may arise a real danger for the life, health or property of the witness, of his or her ascendants, descendants, brothers, sisters, spouse or of persons that he/she is in particularly close relations with.

(2) The protection of the witness shall be temporary and shall be achieved through:

1. providing personal physical guarding by the bodies of the Ministry of Interior.

2. keeping secret his/her identity;

(3) The measure for personal physical guarding of ascendants, descendants, brother or sisters, spouse or persons, that the witness is in particularly close relations with, shall be taken with their consent or with the consent of their legal representatives.

(4) The act of the respective body for the protection of a witness shall state:

1. the issuing body;

2. the date, hour and place of issuance;

3. the circumstances which necessitate providing measures of protection of the witness;

4. the kind of the taken measures

5.the person’s identification data

6.the identification number which shall be given to the person which identity shall be kept in secret

7. the signatures of the person and the issuing body.

(5) Direct access to the protected witness shall have the respective pre-trial bodies and the court, and the defender and the trustee- if they specified the witness.

(6) The measures to protect the witness shall be lifted on a request of the person with regard to whom they have been taken or where there is no more need to apply them, by an act of the body under Para 1.

(7) For the protection of live, health or property of the persons under Para 1 who have given consent for thereof, special intelligence means may be used.

(8) Within thirty days period from the taking of measure under Para 2 the prosecutor or the reporting judge may propose including of the witness and of his/her ascendants, descendants, brother or sisters, spouse or persons, that the witness is in particularly close relations with into the programme of protection under the conditions and following the order of the Law of the Protection of the Persons Threatened in Connection with Criminal Procedure.

Art. 124. The accusation and the sentence may not be grounded only on the testimony given by witnesses under the order of Art. 141.

BULGARIA - PENAL PROCEDURE CODE

Part two. EVIDENCING

Chapter fourteen. METHODS OF EVIDENCING

Section II. Interrogation

Art. 141. (1) The bodies of the pre-trial procedure and the court shall interrogate the witness whose identity is kept in secret and shall all possible precautions for keeping secret his/her identity, including whereas interrogation of a witness is performed abroad the country via video-conference or telephone conference.

(2) Copies of the records of interrogation of the witness without his/her signature shall be submitted immediately to the accused and to his/her defender, and in the court procedure – to the parties, which shall have right to question the witness in written.

(3) Following the order of Para 1 and 2 , interrogation of officer under cover shall be performed, as well as of the persons to which a protection measure under Art. 6, Para 1, items 3, 4 and 5 under the Law of Protection of Persons Threatened in Connection with a Criminal Procedure is imposed.

Rome Statute

Article 87 Requests for cooperation: general provisions

4. In relation to any request for assistance presented under this Part, the Court may take such measures, including measures related to the protection of information, as may be necessary to ensure the safety or physical or psychological well-being of any victims, potential witnesses and their families. The Court may request that any information that is made available under this Part shall be provided and handled in a manner that protects the safety and physical or psychological well-being of any victims, potential witnesses and their families.