The judges' week-long plenary session came to a close on Friday, with the adoption of several amendments to court Internal Rules.
Many of these "represent a refining of procedures in the light of the concrete experience of the past six months of operation," according to a release from the ECCC. Some of the highlights:
* Judges clarified the role of civil parties. In order to become a civil party, an interested person must file an application with the Victims Unit at least 10 days prior to the Initial Hearing. In addition, the court may require civil parties to form a group represented by one lawyer.
* An amended version of the Code of Judicial Ethics is forthcoming.
* A method to completely record proceedings was decided upon.
* In a move opposed by the defense, judges limited the scope of appeals available to the accused upon conviction.ç‡©rior to this amendment, an accused convicted by the trial chamber was entitled to appeal the judgment on "any issues of fact and law," the Defense Support Section wrote in a press statement Friday. Under the amended rules, appeals at the ECCC willç‡½e limited to either an error of law invalidating the decision, or an error of fact, which has occasioned a miscarriage of justice.
All amendments to Internal Rules will be published within the next 10 days.?/p>