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NCJ Number: 64049 Find in a Library
Title: JUVENILE DELINQUENCY IN BELGIUM FROM 1971-1975
Author(s): M DECHESNE
Corporate Author: Avenue Jeanne, 44
Centre D'etude de la Delinquance
Juvenile
Belgium
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 153
Publication Number: PUBLICATION N 44
Sale Source: Avenue Jeanne, 44
Centre D'etude de la Delinquance
Juvenile
1050 Bruxelles,
Belgium
Type: Statistics
Language: French
Country: Belgium
Annotation: STATISTICS ON JUVENILE DELINQUENTS REFERRED TO THE PUBLIC PROSECUTOR AND ACTUALLY BROUGHT TO TRIAL IN BELGIUM FROM 1971 TO 1975 ARE PRESENTED.
Abstract: FIGURES SHOW THAT THE NUMBER OF YOUTHS REFERRED TO THE PROSECUTOR'S OFFICE FOR TRAFFICE AND MORALS VIOLATIONS WAS SMALL BECAUSE OF LEGAL REFORMS, I.E., A 1972 LAW GIVING COURTS OF COMMON LAW JURISDICTION IN TRAFFIC CASES AND A 1973 LAW PERMITTING MINORS 16 TO 18 YEARS OLD TO GO TO CAFES AND DISCOS. REFERRALS IN OTHER CATEGORIES, E.G., OFFENSES COMMITTED AGAINST PERSONS, INCREASED IN NUMBER. OF THE 24 MILLION MINORS REPORTED IN 1975, MOST COMMITTED OFFENSES IN THE COURSE OF THEIR NORMAL ACTIVITIES WITHOUT MALICE OR ADVANCED PLANNING. FOR THIS REASON, THE PROSECUTOR'S OFFICE MADE FREQUENT USE OF ITS OPTION NOT TO PROSECUTE CASES. TWENTY OF 100 YOUTHS WERE BROUGHT TO COURT, BUT THE NUMBER VARIES WIDELY FROM REGION TO REGION. ONLY THE MOST SERIOUS CASES WERE TRIED, AND EVEN THEN THE JUDGE COULD REQUIRE MEDICAL-PSYCHOLOGICAL INVESTIGATION OF JUVENILE OFFENDERS' PERSONALITIES. PLACEMENT IN A SUITABLE INSTITUTION AND PROBATION WERE POSSIBLE SENTENCES; FEW MORE STRINGENT MEASURES WERE IMPOSED. AGE, SEX, AND TYPE OF CRIME COMMITTED ALL AFFECTED TREATMENT OF JUVENILE OFFENDERS BY THE COURTS, BUT THE TYPE OF CRIME WAS THE MOST SIGNIFICANT (E.G., JUVENILES-AT-RISK AND VAGABONDS WERE PLACED IN HOMES WHILE JUVENILES WHO COMMITTED QUALIFIED OFFENSES WERE PUT ON PROBATION). JUDGES USUALLY REVISED DECISIONS AT THE REQUEST OF THE PROSECUTOR RATHER THAN OF THE MINOR OR HIS PARENTS. NEVERTHELESS, THE STATISTICS REFLECT HOW THE JUVENILE COURT SYSTEM FUNCTIONS RATHER THAN REAL JUVENILE DELINQUENCY RATES: THE LAW, NOT THE NUMBER OF DELINQUENTS, HAS CHANGED. BEFORE ANY FURTHER MODIFICATIONS ARE MADE IN THE JUVENILE LAW OF 1965, A STUDY OF INDIVIDUAL JUVENILE FILES RATHER THAN CATCH-ALL STATISTICS IS NEEDED TO ESTABLISH WHAT PROCESSES INVOLVE JUVENILES WITH THE LAW AND WHAT THE EFFECTS OF EXISTING INTERVENTIONS HAVE BEEN. NUMEROUS TABLES AND SOME NOTES ARE FURNISHED. --IN FRENCH. (KMD)
Index Term(s): Belgium; Court statistics; Judicial discretion; Juvenile adjudication; Juvenile codes; Juvenile court diversion; Juvenile court intake; Juvenile courts; Juvenile justice system; Juvenile probation; Law reform; Prosecutorial screening; Statistical analysis
Note: AN ENGLISH SUMMARY TRANSLATION OF THIS DOCUMENT IS AVAILABLE FOR SALE BY NCJRS. SPECIFY NCJ 78590
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=64049

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