If there are no conditions to file the case and after the expiry of the term of art. 415 bis c.p.p., the preliminary investigations terminate when the Public Prosecutor exercises the criminal prosecution, drawing up the accusations (Article 405 c.p.p.) through:

  1. a) citation decree in court (article 33 – 550 c.p.p.,) which introduces to a trial without preliminary hearing;
  2. b) activation of a special procedure (article 438 et seq.) as an alternative to a traditional process;
  3. c) process request, followed – in a short time – by a preliminary hearing.

At the hearing, the Judge can:

1) close the case without the need for a trial;

2) ordering the case to be processed, by means of an indictment (in Italian “rinvio a giudizio”).

If the allegations remain at the preliminary hearing or if the trial does not end with one of the two special procedures, such as the abbreviated trial or the plea bargaining, the case proceeds to the trial phase (in Italian, “dibattimento”).

In other words, the process can be achieved through an alternative procedure, skipping the preliminary hearing, as a summary process or immediate trial, or through a preliminary hearing followed by an indictment “. These witness hearings are normally public.

Please proceed to Phase 3 – The Criminal Trial