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  1. Recently I have noticed that prosecutors from the Ministerio Publico in Chiriqui have been appealing the length of prison sentences bestowed upon gang members, as in this case. At the request of the Anti-gang Superior Court Prosecutor, Third Judicial District Overturns Sentencing Ruling The Superior Court of the Judicial District of the province of Chiriqui, reformed a sentence for the crime of gang activity that had not been applied to several people in the gang "Niño Divino", then that the Superior Prosecutor specializing in crimes of unlawful association, Nathaniel Murgas, sustain an appeal against the judgment No. 2 of 10 January 2017 issued by the liquidator. The judgment of the Court of criminal circuit of Chiriqui, had ordered the conviction of Ronald Orlando Rodríguez González, José Enrique Rivera Arauz, Boniche Pedro González, José Andrés Castro, Ameth Abdiel Sanabria Medina, the penalty of 40 months imprisonment to Elvis Axl Viquez to the penalty of 48 months imprisonment for the crime of gang activity. After the prosecution's appeal, the Superior Court amended the judgment of 10 January and increased the sentence to 120 months imprisonment to all these accused as perpetrators of the crime of gang activity. In addition, convicted as perpetrators of the crime of gang activity to eight persons who were acquitted at first instance by the trial judge In that judgment the Court of first instance had been acquitted: Gatian Odilio Mendoza, Guillermo Anfernee Samundio Horacio González, Manuel Alejandro Reyes, Jospeh Anthony Rovira, Eduardys Clemente Rivers Quintero, Carlos Alberto Lezcano, José Camilo Rivera Arauz and Randy Luis Arosemena Villarreal, of the gang charges for which they had been called to trial. The prosecutor Murgas said in his stall the discrepancy in this judgment, indicating that there were legal and evidentiary elements that evidence linking the defendants, making it clear that it did not agree with the penalty imposed, because the defendants belong to the gang "Niño Divino" of Chiriqui. Support the prosecutor in his notice of appeal, that there is evidence of the identification of the members of the gang, on-site inspections, police reports, inspections to social networks that give account of the link that exists between them and the tattoos that have each of the defendants, as well as the declaration of protected witnesses. Murgas argued that this gang is dedicated to collective security offenses, possession and trafficking of arms and explosives and sale of drugs, facts for which the Court accepted their request and amended the judgment with the signing of the Judges Carlos Humberto Slopes, Carmen Luz de Gracia and Asuncion Castillo. source Ministerio Publico
  2. Over the last several years, the new Sistema Penal Acusatorio has gradually been implemented throughout the country so it's probably a good idea to have a basic understanding of how it works. Source of Information: http://www.sistemapenalacusatorio.gob.pa/ Translation by FreeTranslation with edits. The original Español is below each entry and include commonly used terms in the justice system. FAQs 1 What is the adversarial system? It is a system that seeks, through a legal process, respond in a short time the allegations of crimes. In this system, the prosecutor, the defense and the victim have equal opportunities to be heard; and the decisions are carried out by an independent and impartial judge. Es un sistema que busca, a través de un proceso legal, responder en corto tiempo las denuncias de delitos. En este sistema, el fiscal, la defensa y la víctima tienen igualdad de oportunidades de ser oídas; y las decisiones están a cargo de un juez independiente e imparcial. In this system there is the separation of functions, this is the Public Ministry investigates crimes and presents the accusation if you have the elements to do so, and the judge decides the guilt or otherwise of the accused on the basis of these tests discussed. En este sistema impera la separación de funciones, esto es: El Ministerio Público investiga los delitos y presenta la acusación si tiene los elementos para ello y el juez decide la culpabilidad o no del acusado en base a esas pruebas debatidas. 2. Who are those involved in the Accusatory process? The Prosecutor: Directs the intervention with the support and cooperation of the Judicial Police. El Fiscal: Dirige la intervención con el apoyo y la colaboración de la Policía Judicial. The Victim: Is the person directly affected physically, emotionally or financially for the crime. Also consider themselves to be victims the relatives or family members and the institutions of the State that will be affected by the fact. The victim may become complainant to be considered "part" of the process, for which is provided by the State, if this is of scarce resources. La Víctima: Es la persona directamente afectada física, emocional o patrimonialmente por el delito. También se consideran víctimas los parientes o familiares y las instituciones del Estado que resulten afectadas por el hecho. La víctima puede constituirse en querellante para ser considerada “parte” del proceso, para lo cual es proporcionado por el Estado, si ésta es de escasos recursos. The accused: Is the person(s) to the(s) that is attributed the commission of a crime in a hearing of formulation of attributing which informs you the fact that it investigates its against. El imputado: Es la persona(s) a la(s) que se atribuye la comisión de un delito en una audiencia de formulación de imputación en la cual se le informa el hecho que se investiga en su contra. The defendant: A person who has been charged and whose case will go to hearing on the merits. El acusado: Persona a la que se han formulado cargos y cuyo caso irá a audiencia de fondo. The defender: this is the particular lawyer or lawyers who assumes the defense of the accused or the accused and cares for his fundamental rights and guarantees. El defensor: Se trata del abogado particular o de oficio que asume la defensa del imputado o del acusado y vela por sus derechos y garantías fundamentales. Judges: throughout the process involves various judges: Judge of guarantees, the Trial Court and the Judge of compliance. Los jueces: A lo largo del proceso participan diversos jueces: El Juez de Garantías, el Tribunal del Juicio y el Juez de Cumplimiento. 3. How can you start an investigation? ¿Cómo puede iniciarse la investigación? * Ex officio, when exercised by the State directly as is the case of homicide. * De oficio, cuando la ejerce el Estado directamente como es el caso de los homicidios. * By complaint, when a citizen alerts the authorities of the commission of a crime. Por denuncia, cuando un ciudadano avisa a las autoridades de la comisión de un delito. * On complaint by the person who is directly affected. * Por querella de la persona directamente afectada. 4. What are the phases of the process? * Phase of investigation: is in charge of the Prosecutor, and its purpose is to gather the evidence and the information necessary to prove the offense and the linking of their authors and participants. The judge of guarantees is involved in this phase, by controlling the actions of the Public Prosecutor for they do not violate rights nor warranties of the parties. Fase de Investigación: Está a cargo del Fiscal, y su propósito es recabar los elementos de prueba y la información necesaria para acreditar el delito y la vinculación de sus autores y partícipes. El Juez de Garantías interviene en esta fase, controlando las actuaciones del Fiscal para que no se violen derechos ni garantías de las partes. * Intermediate stage: The Prosecutor can present indictment to which the person charged go to trial. If it supports the accusation, the person becomes considered as charged and debate on the tests that will be discussed in the trial. * Fase Intermedia: El Fiscal puede presentar acusación para que la persona imputada vaya a juicio. Si se admite la acusación, la persona pasa a considerarse acusada y se debate sobre las pruebas que serán examinadas en el juicio. * In the trial phase: In this stage are practiced the evidence admitted. The trial is presided over by three judges. The tests are performed before the judge. The Public Prosecutor, the defense counsel and the representative of the victim being discussed at the hearing. * Fase de Juicio Oral: En esta etapa se practican las pruebas admitidas. El juicio está presidido por tres jueces. Las pruebas se practican ante el Juez. El Fiscal, el abogado de la defensa y el representante de la víctima debaten en la audiencia. In addition, there is a phase of challenge and execution. Además, existe la fase de impugnación y ejecución. 5. What are the advantages of the accusatory system? * Is a system of rights and guarantees for both the accused, as for the victim. Es un sistema de Derechos y Garantías tanto para el acusado, como para la víctima. * Measures restricting the freedom of the person charged are taken by a judge who is the official independent and impartial. Currently this work is done by a prosecutor. Las medidas que limitan la libertad de la persona imputada son tomadas por un juez que es el funcionario independiente e imparcial. Actualmente este trabajo lo realiza un fiscal. * Decisions are issued in hearings, therefore, the process is faster and more transparent because the resolutions are overreacting after listening to the parties and in the face of these. At the moment most of the sentences are issued after the hearing. Las decisiones se emiten en audiencias, por tanto, el proceso es más rápido y transparente porque las resoluciones se profieren después de escuchar a las partes y frente a estas. En estos momentos la mayoría de las sentencias se emiten después de la audiencia. * The tests are performed before the judges decision, therefore, is in a better position to resolve the case because the perceived evidence. Today the majority of the tests are performed by a prosecutor without the participation of the judge. Las pruebas se practican ante los jueces de decisión, por ende, está en mejor posición de resolver el caso porque percibió las pruebas. Hoy día la mayoría de las pruebas se practican por un fiscal sin participación del juez. * In the accusatory system there are also ways to solve the problem without going to trial, for example: the conciliation and mediation. By means of these mechanisms can be fix problems without having to wait until you have a trial. En el sistema acusatorio también existen medios para resolver el problema sin llegar a juicio, por ejemplo: La conciliación y la mediación. Por medio de estos mecanismos se pueden arreglar los problemas sin tener que esperar hasta que haya un juicio. * In the adversarial system is given an equal treatment of parties: Fiscal, accuser, defender and victims. En el sistema acusatorio se le da un trato igualitario a las partes: Fiscal, acusador, defensor y víctimas. * This new system gives rise to a more expeditious justice. Este nuevo sistema da lugar a una justicia más expedita. 6. What are the rights of victims? The victims have the right to: * Justice and to repair the damage. La justicia y a la reparación del daño. * Receive protection and participate in the criminal proceedings in accordance with the law. Recibir protección y participar en el proceso penal de acuerdo con la ley. * Receive medical care, psychiatric, or psychological, spiritual, material and social when required. Recibir atención médica, psiquiátrica o sicológica, espiritual, material y social cuando las requieran. * Act as plaintiffs in the process to require the criminal responsibility of the accused and obtain civil compensation for any damages arising as a result of the crime. Intervenir como querellantes en el proceso para exigir la responsabilidad penal del imputado y obtener la indemnización civil por los daños y perjuicios derivados del delito. * Ask your safety and the safety of his family in particular cases. Solicitar su seguridad y la de su familia en casos determinados. * Be informed about the course of the respective criminal proceeding. Ser informada sobre el curso del proceso penal respectivo. * Receive explanations related to the development of the process. Recibir explicaciones relacionadas con el desarrollo del proceso. 7. What are the rights of persons apprehended by the police? * Right to defense counsel. If you cannot pay, the state will provide one free of charge through the Public Defender. Derecho a un abogado defensor. Si no puede pagar, el estado le proporcionará uno gratuito a través de la Defensoría de Oficio. * To be clearly informed of the fact of which he is accused. A ser informado claramente del hecho del cual se le acusa. * To know the identity of the person who made the arrest. A conocer la identidad de quien realiza el arresto. * To communicate immediately with a person of your choice or lawyer. A Comunicarse inmediatamente con una persona de su elección y con su abogado. * Not to testify against himself. A no declarar contra sí mismo. * Not to be presented to the public. A no ser presentado públicamente. 8. Does the accusatory system offer alternative procedures for the settlement of conflicts? Yes. The accusatory system allows the victim and the defendant, before the trial, to reach agreements through mediation and conciliation, among other mechanisms, but only those crimes that support withdrawal such as personal injury, theft, fraud, slander, and libel, etc. Sí. El Sistema Penal Acusatorio permite que la víctima y el acusado, antes del juicio oral, lleguen a acuerdos mediante la mediación y la conciliación, entre otros mecanismos, pero sólo en aquellos delitos que admiten desistimiento tales como lesiones personales, hurto, estafa, calumnia e injuria, etc. ********************* This little video attempts to make it look 'Oh so easy!' to navigate the new system.
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