Havana, Oct 4 – Cuban officials with the Supreme Court, the Attorney General’s Office and the Interior Ministry have drawn up new regulations for the Cuban Penal Code and for the authority of the courts.
During the prime-time TV Show “The Round Table Discussion,” the officials said that the initiatives strengthen state policy in keeping with the economic and social transformations underway in the country.
Oscar Manuel Silvera, the vice-president of the People’s Supreme Court, said that the new decrees reinforce the authority of municipal courts. Crimes, formerly resulting in 3 years of imprisonment can now result in up to 8-year prison terms.
The regulations are aimed at taking justice closer to the scene of the crime and to the individuals involved. Silvera said this favors legal decision making, the preservation of security and the improvement of the quality of the service, while the right to justice is upheld.
The changes in the Penal Code include the imposition of administrative fines, as long as the crime committed reveals a low level of risk. For such crimes the penalty does not exceed three years of imprisonment or a one thousand-peso fine. The final decision would require the approval of the prosecution.
Colonel Felix Yanes, second chief of the General Criminal Investigations and Operations Department with the Ministry of the Interior, said that the new regulations favor case work with indictments of three-years. This, he said, is in keeping with with the humanitarian principles of the Cuban Revolution.
Cuban Attorney General Rafael Pino explained that acting entities, like the Revolutionary Police, now do not have have to to necessarily file cases with the courts. However, the agreement of the prosecution is necessary in all cases, based on the background of the guilty party and the consequences of the crime.