You are considered an ‘injured party’ (poškozený - term used for the victim of a crime in the Code of Criminal Procedure (trestní řád)) if you have suffered harm as the result of an action identified as a crime in the Criminal Code (trestní zákon). This harm may take various forms, for example, damage to or theft of an object. As the injured party you have certain legal rights before, during and after court proceedings.
Criminal proceedings in the Czech Republic begin with fact-checking and an investigation. At this stage of the case, the police make inquiries under the supervision of the public prosecutor. If enough evidence is gathered during this stage of the proceedings proving that a crime has been committed and that it was committed by a specific person, the public prosecutor issues a decision to bring charges, and the case then goes to court. During the court stage of the criminal proceedings, the court hears the evidence and on the basis of that evidence it finds the defendant guilty or not guilty. If the court finds the defendant guilty of committing the crime, it imposes a penalty on the defendant. In the case of a non-guilty verdict, the defendant is acquitted. The criminal proceedings may continue on the basis of an appeal brought before a higher court if you have made a claim for damages.
As an injured party you can join the criminal proceedings at any stage.
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