Prosecutors, Examining Judges, and Control of Police Investigations
STEWART FIELD, PETER ALLDRIDGE, AND NICO JÖRG
At present, in both countries 'interrogation is the investigative strategy of the police?'.1 Accordingly, in our discussion of the role of rules and courts in the control of investigation we concentrate on the procedural framework for interrogation.
Suspects arrested and interrogated by the Dutch police have more limited rights than their English or Welsh counterparts. They have no right to have a lawyer present during police interrogation: a duty defence counsel will be informed that the suspect is held in police custody, but questioning may continue in his/her absence. The police can hold the suspect for six hours for interrogation; for seventy-two hours in the interest of the investigation without prosecutorial consent, and for another seventy-two hours with the consent of the Prosecutor. The only record of the interview(s) is a police statement usually signed by the defendant. Interviews are not tape-recorded nor taken down verbatim. Thus arrested Dutch suspects are faced with a police force with very broad discretionary control over the circumstances of custody and questioning. In some ways the picture resembles the situation in England and Wales before the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (PACE). Then, a number of observation studies of police interrogation concluded that a variety of inducements and threats were routinely offered to get confessions.2
Though no empirical studies appear to have been done in the Netherlands____________________