March 25, 2008

Precarious Justice

Arbitrary Detention and Unfair Trials in the Deficient Criminal Justice System of Saudi Arabia

Prologue
Summary
Methodology
Part 1: Saudi Law..
I. Sharia and Statutory Law..
II. Legislative Developments and the Law of Criminal Procedure
III. Codification of Criminal Laws
IV. Absence of Rules of Precedent
V. Other Legal Gaps
Right to Inform Others of One's Arrest
Right of Access to a Lawyer
Obligation to Charge Promptly
Obligation to Bring to Trial without Undue Delay
Right to Adequate Time and Facilities to Prepare One's Defense
Right to Challenge Lawfulness of Arrest and Detention
Part 2: Systemic Problems in Saudi Criminal Justice
VI. Arbitrary Arrest and Detention
Criminalizing Lawful Activity
Detention Beyond Completion of Sentence
Arrests Without Warrants
Private Claims and Arbitrary Detention
VII. Due Process and Fair Trial Violations
Presumption of Innocence
Appointing a Lawyer
Right to Bring and Cross-examine Witnesses
Reasonable Doubt
Public Trial100
Double Jeopardy102
Summary Justice, Perverted Justice104
VIII. Torture, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment108
Coerced Confessions111
Part 3: National Security Suspects116
XI. Detention of National Security Suspects116
Political Dissidents Detained Arbitrarily116
Counseling Instead of Trials117
Detention Without Trial of Suspected Jihadi120
Mabahith Prison Oversight123
The "Forgotten" Shia125
Part 4: Organization of the Saudi Judiciary129
X. Recent Developments in the Court System.. 129
Judicial Training Institute132
XI. Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution134
XII. Board of Grievances135
Recommendations138
Changes to Law.. 138
Rights in Detention139
Trial Protections140
Institutional Changes141
Acknowledgements142
Appendix: Human Rights Watch Discussions with Officials of the Government of Saudi Arabia, Riyadh, March 8-15, 2008.. 143