The Rights of Victims of Crime Law, 2001, includes a series of rights of victims concerning criminal proceedings. This legislation is part of a global wave in western countries which have recognized the necessity of granting rights to victims of crime.
The first part of the law refers to general definitions and principles of the victim's rights, taking into consideration their situation and needs, such as protection of privacy and being attentive to their limitations (such as mental health and language barriers).
The second part refers to the victim's rights during the different stages of the criminal proceedings, the trial and prison time. The victim can receive information about every stage through the MENA system, and express his/her opinion on the procedures, such as plea bargains and pardoning requests.
The law became effective in April 2005 and the Israel Police, the Israel Prison Service and the State Prosecution put in great efforts to assure a smooth and easy process for the victims while accessing the MENA system.
About the MENA System:
The Victims of Crime computerized system is continuously updated with all data from the early stages of filing a complaint through the investigation process, arrests, case transfer to the plaintiff, trial, verdict, appeal, sentence serving and prisoner vacations. A victim of crime is able to make use of the system at all times using a private identification code provided by the police.
In special cases, as mentioned in the regulations, the system will initiate contact with the victim upon his or her request and will inform them that important information regarding their case is available on the system.
Victims of crime can access the system in two methods:
- Phone, at 02-501-7030 (phone service is only available in Hebrew, Sunday-Thursday, 8a.m.-4p.m.)
- Online Victims of Crime System: The system can be accessed by internet with a user name and password provided by the Israel Police. The Victims of Crime System offers the following information:
- Where the case stands and who the commanding officer is
- Information on the suspects and/or defendants
- Additional information regarding the case, including the victim's rights