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Penal mediation in Belgium. Insights on the basis of registered data.

Burssens, Dieter
June 4, 2015

Source: (2012) Paper presented at the ESC Conference, 13th of september 2012, Bilbao (Spain).

Since 1994, public prosecutors in Belgium have been allowed to propose penal mediation to
criminal suspects. The supervision and follow-up in this procedure are provided by ‘justice
assistants’ (comparable to probation officers), who systematically record crucial information and
register it in the national SIPAR database. An exploration of this database reveals interesting
insights regarding the actual practice of penal mediation. On the basis of data from 2007 we
describe the number and characteristics of cases of penal mediation in Belgium and the profile of
the offenders concerned. On the basis of the available data we also examined whether or not we
could find relevant correlations between characteristics of (offenders in) cases and the extent to
which cases have resulted in an agreement and proper compliance with that agreement. (excerpt)


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