It is of the utmost importance that access to legal assistance within the ZSM-procedure is organized thoroughly. Every suspect has the right to consult an attorney preceding the first hearing by the police. Various parties have voiced their concern however regarding the fact that, in many cases, suspects in the ZSM-procedure relinquish their right to an attorney even though they are not informed regarding the potential consequences. In 2013, the working group ‘ZSM & Rechtsbijstand’ recommended to organize the ZSM-procedure in such a way that suspects automatically receive legal assistance prior to the police hearing (first consultation).1 Suspects are then only allowed to turn legal assistance down by telling the attorney personally he or she does not want it. In addition, the suspect has a right to legal counsel in connection with the settlement decision in the case the prosecutor intends to impose an immediate settlement (second consultation). Furthermore, the first contact between the suspect and the attorney would take place through video-conferencing. This recommended ZSM-procedure was implemented in three regions (Rotterdam, Central-Netherlands, and Eastern-Netherlands) to pilot the procedure recommended by the working group. The goal of the current study is to determine what the consequences of the recommended ZSMprocedure are for the legal protection of suspects, the efficiency of the ZSM-process, and the costs for the police, the Public Prosecutor’s Office and subsidized legal assistance. This study was carried out by a multi-disciplinary team of the Erasmus University, led by the Centre of Excellence in Public Safety Management (CESAM), in November 2014 through August 2015.
|Place of Publication||Rotterdam|
|Publisher||Rotterdam School of Management (RSM), EUR|
|Number of pages||92|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|