Bulgarian MPs Approved the Removal of the Fast Track Trial Proceedings in Premeditated Murder Cases
10 October 2019, www.novinite.com
Bulgarian MPs on October 9th. voted to approve amendments to the Criminal Procedure Code which remove the use of fast track trial proceedings in premeditated murder cases, BNT reported.
The MPs voted to abolish the use of the fast track procedure after public outcryagainst the provision after several serious murder cases received media attention, because the perpetrators used the fast track trial procedures to reduce their sentences by several years.
The fast track trial proceedings gave an option to the accused in trials of having a reduced sentence by one-third if they confessed to committing the crime.
The MPs voted to remove the fast track proceedings only for the cases of premeditated murder. At the suggestion of the ruling GERB party, the fast track proceedings remain in place for crimes that result in grievous bodily harm. This was subject to sharp criticism by the opposition Bulgarian Socialist Party and some MPs from the United Patriots alliance which is a minority partner in the ruling coalition.