The legislative process for modernising the Code of Criminal Procedure

The new Code of Criminal Procedure will consist of eight parts, or ‘books’. The Ministry of Security and Justice will submit a bill for each of these books to Parliament (the House of Representatives and the Senate). The bills will be grouped together and submitted in stages.

Bills for the new Code

The Code of Criminal Procedure will be renumbered. The Ministry of Security and Justice will take the new numbering into account when submitting the bills to Parliament. Everyone who has to assess the legislation will see clearly how the various parts of the new Code fit together.

The legislative calendar (Wetgevingskalender) (in Dutch) contains the bills that have been introduced in the House of Representatives.

Who is involved in the legislative process?

Usually, when new laws are proposed in parliament, other bodies and institutions are not involved until later in the legislative process. But the process for the new Code of Criminal Procedure is different. Outside bodies have been involved from the very beginning (the preconsultation stage).

For example, they took part in:

  • expert meetings;
  • working visits;
  • a national conference in 2014 and another in 2015;
  • a working group assessing the substance of the proposals and their effects, including the financial impact.

The contributions made by these bodies have improved the bills – not only in terms of their legal content but also in terms of the effects of implementation. The academic world is also closely involved and all proposals are  discussed with the Code of Criminal Procedure Modernisation Commission. Professor Geert Knigge is the adviser to the legislative team.