Bill initiated to use communications data in court cases

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Grand opening of the Supreme Court. Source: Silver Gutmann/riigikohus

A bill to allow communications data to be used in criminal proceedings will be sent to the courts, the Riigikogu's legal affairs committee agreed on Tuesday.

The bill would grant permissions for using communications data in criminal proceedings in courts at prosecutors' request.

Chairman of the legal affairs committee Jaanus Karilaid (Reform) said that the committee's decision was based on a decision by the European Union's Court of Justice from March 2, in which the court found that the prosecutor's office cannot be deemed an independent establishment suitable for granting permissions for gaining access to communications data as the prosecutor's office itself leads criminal procedures and represents national charges in court.

"The bill is geared at resolving the issue of independence in connection with granting communications data permissions," Karilaid said. "Building on the court decision, we underscore in the bill that in addition to the aspect of unavoidable need, the severity of the crime and the breach of personal rights must also be taken into consideration."

The committee decided to submit the bill aimed at amending the Code of Criminal Procedure to the board of the Riigikogu on Wednesday

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Editor: Helen Wright

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