Are you facing a criminal charge in Italy? As part of our legal services, our lawyers offers expert guidance and representation throughout the entire process, even if you are located in the UK. Our deep understanding of both Italian criminal law and UK legal procedures ensures you receive the best possible support.

Understanding the Italian Criminal Justice System

The Italian Criminal Law is governed by the Italian Penal Code (Codice Penale) and by the special legislation for the regulation of each single type of crime and by the Code of Criminal Procedure (Codice di Procedura Penale) governing investigations into crimes, arrest, imputation, the trial of the accused, etc. until the final decision (absolution or sentence).

Key Principles of Italian Criminal Law

In criminal procedure there are two basic principles of law:

  1. Ignorance of the law cannot be an excuse for not respecting the law;
  2. All the accused can be convicted only if there is certainty, beyond reasonable doubt, that they committed the crime with which they are charged.

A distinction is made with reference to the nature of the offender:

  • Natural person (Individual): Personal Offences (including Personal Injury); Property Offences; Fiscal Crimes; and Cyber Crimes;
  • Legal Persons (Corporate): Corporate criminal liability includes Environmental Crimes, Financial Crimes and the so called White Collar Crimes, Legislative Decree n. 231/2001 (providing for the direct liability of legal entities, companies and associations for certain crimes committed by their representatives).

The Italian Criminal Procedure

The criminal procedure begins when a criminal offence is reported (in Italian “notizia di reato“) to the prosecutor by the Judicial Police (Polizia Giudiziaria) or by any other means (citizens, press).

In Italy the duration of the criminal proceedings depends on several factors and cannot be calculated exactly. The average duration of proceedings for the first instance is approximately between four and five years. Sometimes the length of court proceedings for all three sets of proceedings is more than seven years (four years for the first instance, two years for the second instance and one year at least for the Supreme Court), so that a lot of trials end up with a dismissal of the case as the penalty becomes time-barred.

Facing Italian Criminal Charges in the UK? Get Expert Legal Help Now!

While this is just a general overview, navigating an Italian criminal case from abroad presents unique challenges. Our lawyers can assist you with the complexities of the process and advocate for your rights within the UK legal framework.

To know more about each phase of the Italian criminal proceeding, please a refer to our Criminal proceeding phases Guide.

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