Victim of crime
The victim of crime is called the injured party. Some offences are complainant offences. The prosecutor may not bring charges for them unless the injured party demands punishment, i.e., makes a prosecution request. However, most offences are subject to public prosecution, i.e. the pre-trial investigation authorities and the prosecutor can act regardless of the will of the injured party.
During criminal proceedings, the injured party may present a claim for punishment and damages against the defendant. The injured party can also be named to be heard during the trial for a probative purpose.
Pursuing the claims of the injured party
If the injured party so requests, the prosecutor may present the claim for damages to the defendant on his or her behalf. However, the prosecutor may refuse to present the injured party’s claim if it is obviously ill-founded, or if its presentation would significantly impair the prosecution of the case.
If the prosecutor refuses to present the claim in court, the injured party may present it him or herself in the court or retain counsel, such as an advocate, to present it on his or her behalf.
The injured party can also bring charges
The injured party also has a so-called secondary right of prosecution. If the prosecutor has decided not to prosecute, the injured party is entitled to bring charges for the offence at his or her own discretion and to have the case considered by a court. In such a case, the injured party must pursue the matter on his or her own responsibility.Nykyisillä sivuilla oleva teksti on päivitettävä vastaamaan yllä olevaa suomenkielistä: