Articles

Dutch ‘ZSM Settlements’ in the Face of Procedural Justice:
The Sooner the Better?

Authors:

Abstract

The Dutch  ‘ZSM’ project was launched in March 2011 and implemented nationwide in 2013. Its (official) aim is to (conclusively) deal with frequently occurring crime (cases) in a rapid, astute, selective, simple and society-oriented way, paying due attention to the interests of defendants, victims and society alike. The underlying assumption of the ZSM – and its accompanying focus on the speedy (out-of-court) resolution of criminal cases that do not (necessarily) merit the attention of the courts –  is that ‘speed’ is beneficial to all involved: to defendants, to victims, to the police (and the Prosecution Service) and to society as such. The question that concerns the authors is whether that assumption is correct. Does a speedy (out-of-court) resolution indeed do justice to all involved, and particularly defendants and (purported) victims? In this contribution, the Dutch ZSM process and its focus on the speedy out-of-court resolution is analyzed from the perspective of both the requirements of Article 6 of the European Convention and the social-scientific notion of procedural justice.

Keywords:

ZSM settlementsArticle 6 ECHRprocedural justice
  • Page/Article: 73-85
  • DOI: 10.18352/ulr.291
  • Published on 20 Nov 2014
  • Peer Reviewed