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Poland: Courts, Not Prosecutors, To Decide On Temporary Arrests

Warsaw, August 5 (RFE/RL) - Effective today, Poland's regional courts--not local prosecutors--make decisions on whether a "temporary arrest" is ordered in a criminal case.

Under a "temporary arrest," a person can be held for up to three months. The provision is part of a new penal code.

The new regulation is aimed at providing more protection for citizens against arbitrary arrest. Under the communist-era system, prosecutors could apply the "temporary arrest," citing crimes such as "significantly harmful social behavior." Under the old system, courts did not routinely review the prosecutor-ordered arrests.