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The Appellate Court’s Reformatory Powers in ECtHR Case Law – between the Efficiency of the Procedure and the Guarantees of the Fair Trial in Criminal Proceedings

In: European Journal of Crime, Criminal Law and Criminal Justice
Author:
Maciej Fingas PhD, Assistant Professor at University of Gdansk, Faculty of Law and Administration, Gdansk, Poland, maciej.fingas@prawo.ug.edu.pl

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Abstract

Appeal proceedings in criminal cases are regulated in various ways by European legislators. The ECtHR case law does not impose any particular model of appeal proceedings; however, Article 6 is applicable to appeal proceedings and the manner of its application is contingent on the specific features of the proceedings in question. One of the key problems in this respect is the way the issue of the reformatory powers of appellate courts is regulated. This article seeks to reconstruct the rules worked out in the Strasbourg Court’s case law pertaining to this matter, as well as to formulate proposals as regards applying the principle of immediacy in appeal proceedings and the issue of the appellate court’s differing assessment of facts established by the court of first instance. The possible developments of case law in this area are also discussed.

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