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NCJ Number: 228423 Find in a Library
Title: Legal Situation on Stalking Among the European Member States
Journal: European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research  Volume:15  Issue:3  Dated:2009  Pages:229-242
Author(s): Laura De Fazio
Date Published: 2009
Page Count: 14
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Netherlands
Annotation: This study analyzes the legislative response to stalking among Member States of the European Union (“European Member States”).
Abstract: Among European countries, Denmark is a pioneer, having criminalized stalking in 1933, when its current Penal Code was enacted. The United Kingdom was the next European Member State to criminalize stalking, enacting the Protection From Harassment Act in 1997. The only other European Member States that have passed laws against stalking are Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Malta, Ireland, Austria, and Italy. The European Member States with anti-stalking laws have either introduced a new article into the existing Penal Code, have amended an article in force for similar conduct, or have enacted specific legislation against harassment or domestic violence that is intended to include stalking. These anti-stalking laws have various legal definitions of stalking (none have adopted the term “stalking” in the text of their laws). Whereas some countries provide a wide definition of the offense that focuses on the victim’s reaction and/or the intent of the perpetrator, other countries simply prohibit a list of various types of behavior. These laws typically mention civil or criminal provisions for protection orders and restraining orders as legal instruments for countering stalking behaviors. No data exist on the implementation and effectiveness of European Member States’ stalking laws. In European Member States without an anti-stalking law, it is possible to prosecute stalking only when specific behavior fits crimes defined under existing laws. 1 table, 30 references, and appended articles and sections of the European anti-stalking laws
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Anti-stalking laws; Europe; European Union; Foreign laws; Stalking
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