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South Africa
NATIONAL LEGISLATION OVERVIEWS
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Child Justice Act, No. 75 of 2008

Long title


To establish a criminal justice system for children, who are in conflict with the law and are accused of committing offences, in accordance with the values underpinning the Constitution and the international obligations of the Republic; to provide for the minimum age of criminal capacity of children; to provide a mechanism for dealing with children who lack criminal capacity outside the criminal justice system; to make special provision for securing attendance at court and the release or detention and placement of children; to make provision for the assessment of children; to provide for the holding of a preliminary inquiry and to incorporate, as a central feature, the possibility of diverting matters away from the formal criminal justice system, in appropriate circumstances; to make provision for child justice courts to hear all trials of children whose matters are not diverted; to extend the sentencing options available in respect of children who have been convicted; to entrench the notion of restorative justice in the criminal justice system in respect of children who are in conflict with the law; and to provide for matters incidental thereto.

Table of contents

SECTION TITLE
PREAMBLE
TABLE OF CONTENTS

CHAPTER 1. DEFINITIONS, OBJECTS AND GUIDING PRINCIPLES OF ACT
1. Definitions
2. Objects of Act
3. Guiding principles
CHAPTER 2. APPLICATION OF ACT, CRIMINAL CAPACITY OF CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF 14 YEARS AND MATTERS RELATED TO AGE
Part 1. Application of Act
4. Application of Act
5. Manner of dealing with children who are alleged to have committed offences
6. Seriousness of offences
Part 2. Criminal capacity of children under the age of 14 years
7. Minimum age of criminal capacity
8. Review of minimum age of criminal capacity
9. Manner of dealing with child under the age of 10 years
10. Decision to prosecute child who is 10 years or older but under the age of 14 years
11. Proof of criminal capacity
Part 3. Age estimation, age determination and error regarding age
12. Responsibility of police official where age of child is uncertain
13. Age estimation by probation officer
14. Age determination by inquiry magistrate or child justice court
15. Age determination by any other court
16. Error regarding age of child who is alleged to have committed offence
CHAPTER 3. WRITTEN NOTICE, SUMMONS AND ARREST
17. Methods of securing attendance of child at preliminary inquiry
18. Written notice to appear at preliminary inquiry
19. Summons
20. Arrest
CHAPTER 4. RELEASE OR DETENTION AND PLACEMENT OF CHILD PRIOR TO SENTENCE AND RELATED MATTERS
Part 1. Release or detention
21. Approach to be followed when considering release or detention of child after arrest
22. Release of child on written notice into care of parent or appropriate adult or guardian before first appearance at preliminary inquiry
23. Duty of police official when releasing child into care of parent or appropriate adult or guardian
24. Release of child into care of parent or appropriate adult or guardian or on own recognisance at preliminary inquiry or child justice court
25. Release of child on bail
Part 2. Placement
26. Approach to be followed when considering placement of child
27. Placement options for child who has not been released before first appearance at preliminary inquiry
28. Protection of children detained in police custody
29. Placement in a child and youth care centre
30. Placement in a prison
31. Error regarding placement

Part 3. Factors to be taken into account by presiding officer regarding further detention and placement and conditions of detention at preliminary inquiry or child justice court
32. Factors to be taken into account by presiding officer regarding further detention and placement at preliminary inquiry or child justice court
33. Conditions of detention at preliminary inquiry or child justice court
CHAPTER 5. ASSESSMENT OF CHILD
34. Duty of probation officer to assess children
35. Purpose of assessment
36. Confidentiality of information obtained at assessment
37. Place where assessment is to be conducted
38. Persons to attend assessment
39. Powers and duties of probation officer at assessment
40. Assessment report of probation officer
CHAPTER 6. DIVERSION BY PROSECUTOR IN RESPECT OF MINOR OFFENCES
41. Diversion by prosecutor before preliminary inquiry in respect of offences referred to in Schedule 1
42. Diversion option to be made order of court
CHAPTER 7. PRELIMINARY INQUIRY
43. Nature and objectives of preliminary inquiry
44. Persons to attend preliminary inquiry
45. Confidentiality of information furnished at preliminary inquiry
46. Failure to appear at preliminary inquiry
47. Procedure relating to holding of preliminary inquiry
48. Postponement of preliminary inquiry
49. Orders at preliminary inquiry
50. Referral of children in need of care and protection to children's court
CHAPTER 8. DIVERSION
51. Objectives of diversion
52. Consideration of diversion
53. Diversion options
54. Selection of diversion option
55. Minimum standards applicable to diversion
56. Provision and accreditation of diversion programmes and diversion service providers
57. Monitoring of compliance with diversion order
58. Failure to comply with diversion order
59. Legal consequences of diversion
60. Register of children in respect of whom diversion order has been made
61. Family group conference
62. Victim-offender mediation
CHAPTER 9. TRIAL IN CHILD JUSTICE COURT
63. Child justice courts and conduct of trials involving children
64. Referral of children in need of care and protection to children's court
65. Parental assistance
66. Time limits relating to postponements
67. Child justice court may divert matter
CHAPTER 10. SENTENCING
Part 1. General
68. Child to be sentenced in terms of this Chapter
69. Objectives of sentencing and factors to be considered
70. Impact of offence on victim
71. Pre-sentence reports
Part 2. Sentencing options
72. Community-based sentences
73. Restorative justice sentences
74. Fine or alternatives to fine
75. Sentences of correctional supervision [...amended by Act 2013_042_038_20140122 - was entitled "Sentences involving correctional supervision"]
76. Sentence of compulsory residence in child and youth care centre
77. Sentence of imprisonment
78. Postponement or suspension of passing of sentence
79. Failure to comply with certain sentences
CHAPTER 11. LEGAL REPRESENTATION
80. Requirements to be complied with by legal representatives
81. Legal representation at preliminary inquiry
82. Child to be provided with legal representation at State expense in certain circumstances
83. Child may not waive legal representation in certain circumstances
CHAPTER 12. APPEALS AND AUTOMATIC REVIEW OF CERTAIN CONVICTIONS AND SENTENCES
84. Appeals
85. Automatic review in certain cases
86. Release on bail pending review or appeal
CHAPTER 13. RECORDS OF CONVICTION AND SENTENCE
87. Expungement of records of certain convictions and diversion orders
CHAPTER 14. GENERAL PROVISIONS
88. Rules of court
89. Establishment and jurisdiction of One-Stop Child Justice Centres
90. Referral of information relating to age to Department of Home Affairs
91. Liability for patrimonial loss arising from execution of diversion order
92. Children used by adults to commit crime
93. National policy framework
94. Establishment of lntersectoral Committee
95. Meetings of Intersectoral Committee
96. Responsibilities, functions and duties of Intersectoral Committee
97. Regulations, directives, national instructions and register
98. Transitional arrangements
99. Repeal or amendment of laws
100. Short title and commencement
Sch. 1. ... (Sections 6(1)(a), 10(2)(a)(i), 18(1), 20(1), 21(2)(a) and (b) and (3)(b), 22(1), 24(2)(b), 27(a)(ii), 30(5)(a), 41(1), 52(2), 53(2)(a), 54(2)(a), 71(1)(b), 77(3)(c), 87(1)(a)(i), 92 and 99(2)(a)) [sic - no title]
Sch. 2. ... (Sections 6(1)(b), 21(2)(b) and (3)(b), 24(2)(b), 27(a)(ii) and (b), 52(2),
53(2)(b), 54(2)(b), 77(3)(b), 87(1)(a)(ii), 92 and 99(2)(a)) 
[sic - no title]
Sch. 3. ... (Sections 6(1)(c), 30(1)(c), (2) and (5)(a), 52(3)(a), 53(2)(b), 54(2)(b), 76(3), 77(3)(a) and 99(2)(a)) [sic - no title]
Sch. 4. ... (Section 99(1)) [sic - no title]
Sch. 5. AUDIT OF THE PROVISIONS OF THE CRIMINAL PROCEDURE ACT AND THEIR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE CHILD JUSTICE BILL (Section 4(3)(b)) [sic - reference to "Bill"]

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