Modern criminal procedures incorporate appellate review into fundamental due process. In particular, the recent case law of the European Court of Human Rights gradually develops common standards for the right to appeal and fair trial guarantees in front of second instance courts in the criminal field. However, the structure and scope of such rights remain varied. The reason is due in part to historical and institutional differences: persons entitled to institute appeals, evidentiary rules, scope of the defendant’s rights at the appeal stage of proceedings, review of Courts of Appeals decisions significantly vary from one State to another.
To date, no comprehensive nor comparative analysis of Member States’ criminal appeal procedures has been done, despite the fact that some recent reforms have substantially reshaped the procedural landscape. By adopting a comparative approach, the international conference intends to improve scientific knowledge and encourage exchange of views on functions and structures of existing appeal procedures in criminal matters. In this perspective, the ultimate goal of the discussions is to identify best practices and a blueprint for criminal appellate procedures Europe wide.
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