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[DRAFT] International Victim Restitution Act

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Barfleur
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[DRAFT] International Victim Restitution Act

Postby Barfleur » Mon Feb 22, 2021 4:09 pm

International Victim Restitution Act
Category: Regulation | Area of Effect: Legal Reform | Proposed by: Barfleur


The World Assembly,

Recognizing the great strides made in recent years towards providing for victims of crime;

Aware that victims of crime are often entitled to mandatory or discretionary restitution from the perpetrator in the form of monetary damages to cover physical, psychological, and emotional harm, as well as any financial losses incurred as a direct result of the crime or of the victim's inability to earn money as a result of the crime;

Believing that, when entitled by law to restitution, a victim of crime ought not to be denied it on jurisdictional grounds;

Hereby enacts the following as international law:

1. In this resolution—
  1. the term "victim" means a person who has suffered an injury, of a physical, sexual, psychological, medical, or financial character, as a result of an act committed against that person or against a group of persons in violation of national or international law;
  2. the term "restitution" means any money or thing of value ordered, by a competent tribunal of any member nation, to be paid by the perpetrator of an act committed in violation of national or international law to the victim of such act;
  3. the term "member nation"—
    1. means a nation which is a member of the World Assembly; and
    2. includes any territory or local government part of, or subject to the jurisdiction of, any such nation;
  4. the term "Committee" means the World Assembly Judiciary Committee; and
  5. the "relevant factors" are—
    1. the person's income, from employment, investments, and any other activity;
    2. the cost of living in the area in which the person resides;
    3. the amount of money that person has in currency or in a bank account; and
    4. any family or caretaking obligations that require the person to spend money.

2. A person residing in a member nation, who has been awarded restitution by a competent tribunal of another member nation for a crime committed in such other nation, may petition the Committee to issue an order requiring the person subject to the order to pay the required restitution in full. The Committee shall grant all such petitions, excluding those deemed to be frivolous or without merit.

3. In the event that the intended target of an order described in section 2 has demonstrated a genuine inability to pay the required restitution (taking all relevant factors into account), the Committee shall instead issue a modified order requiring the person subject to such order to pay the required restitution in installments, in such manner as will not impose an excessive hardship on such person.

4. A person who commits a crime in one member nation and then relocates, whether lawfully or unlawfully, to another member nation, shall not be discharged of liability for any restitution such person had heretofore been liable for by reason of such relocation; and a person who willfully fails to pay restitution for such reason shall be removed, in a manner not inconsistent with prior international law, to the nation wherein the restitution in question was awarded, and made to pay such value in full to the victim or, if the victim is deceased or chooses not to be present, to the victim's legal representative.

5. The Committee shall not order any person to pay restitution unless—
  1. such person has been convicted (including by plea agreement or a similar arrangement) of the crime for which restitution is sought;
  2. the crime—
    1. resulted or was intended to result in death, loss of liberty, sexual violation or exploitation, or injury to the body or to the mental faculties;
    2. involved the improper taking, whether by force or by theft, of money or real or personal property;
    3. constituted a serious, genuine, and wrongful subversion of the government of a member nation; or
    4. involved or constituted an act, omission, or course of conduct prohibited or required to be prohibited by international law; and
  3. the prosecution has shown that the victim has suffered the requisite harm (see section 1(a)) and that the amount of restitution ordered is proportional to the extent of such injury.

6. Nothing in this resolution shall be construed to require member nations to impose restitution or to impair the authority of the World Assembly, by future legislation, to regulate the manner in which restitution may be awarded.


This is a proposal I've been thinking of for a while, but have only put to paper now. This is a very rough draft, and I welcome any feedback (with the exception of threats and insults--please do not send those).

Frequently Anticipated Questions

What is restitution?
In many nations, the victim of a crime can be awarded money, to be paid by the person convicted of the crime, to cover things such as physical and psychological injuries, the cost of examination/treatment, cost of security, and lost income as a result of the crime. That is called restitution. It generally comes in two forms: mandatory and discretionary. Mandatory restitution is required by national law to be awarded to the victim (generally for violent or sexual crimes), and the role of the court is to determine the appropriate amount. Discretionary restitution is not required to be awarded, and is for the judge or jury to decide whether to award.

How is this a matter for international concern?
1. The international interest in the administration of justice. A person lawfully ordered to pay restitution, to the victim of a crime they have been duly convicted of, commits an injustice to the victim if he or she absconds with no means of recovering the money owed. The World Assembly, with its plenary power over activities within member nations, has the means of enforcing payment which is often sorely needed by the victim. From an international federalist perspective, this serves to ensure that victims of crime are not denied there due solely because of jurisdictional issues.
2. Respect for the sovereignty of member nations. In addition to the injustice done to the victim (see point 1), a person who absconds to avoid paying restitution undermines the functioning of the tribunal which ordered its payment. From a national sovereigntist perspective, by enacting this proposal as international law, the WA would signify its support for the authority of its member nation's self-government.
3. The transnational aspect. Finally, there is the obvious: a person who wrongfully crosses national boundaries is, by definition, creating a situation where more than one government has jurisdiction, and international cooperation would be beneficial in order to ensure that the law applies fairly and uniformly with minimal intrusion into the workings of the member nations.

Is this proposal necessary?
The author believes so :p . Victims of violent and sexual crimes suffer traumas of a physical, emotional, and psychological character, in many cases requiring therapy or physical assistance in order to go about their lives. There are also the costs of examination (especially in sexual crimes), treatment, and medication caused directly by the commission of the crime. And finally, victims often miss time otherwise spent at work (due to injuries, treatment, and court procedures), resulting in lost income. Victims of financial crimes, for obvious reasons, often finds themselves short of money. Because the issue of restitution is important to victims of crime, crosses national borders, and results in a minimal intrusion into the sovereignty of national governments, I believe this proposal is necessary.
Last edited by Barfleur on Wed Apr 14, 2021 5:14 pm, edited 7 times in total.
Barfleur: Unus pro omnibus et omnes pro uno
Citizen of The East Pacific
“Sweatpants are a sign of defeat. You lost control of your life so you bought some sweatpants.”
― Karl Lagerfeld
Ambassador: Roger MacGeorge
Military Attaché: Colonel Lyndon Q. Ralston
Co-author, GA#534.
The Barfleurian World Assembly Mission can be found at Room 1903, Floor 19, WAHQ.

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Barfleur
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Postby Barfleur » Wed Apr 07, 2021 12:00 pm

Bumping for further consideration.
Barfleur: Unus pro omnibus et omnes pro uno
Citizen of The East Pacific
“Sweatpants are a sign of defeat. You lost control of your life so you bought some sweatpants.”
― Karl Lagerfeld
Ambassador: Roger MacGeorge
Military Attaché: Colonel Lyndon Q. Ralston
Co-author, GA#534.
The Barfleurian World Assembly Mission can be found at Room 1903, Floor 19, WAHQ.

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Bananaistan
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Postby Bananaistan » Wed Apr 07, 2021 12:24 pm

"Nearly everyone in the so called liberal democracies is broke, what's this committee going to do? Shake them by the ankles and see what falls out of their pockets?"
Delegation of the People's Republic of Bananaistan to the World Assembly
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General Assistant and Head of Security: Comrade Watchman Brian of Tarth
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Barfleur
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Postby Barfleur » Wed Apr 07, 2021 2:55 pm

Bananaistan wrote:"Nearly everyone in the so called liberal democracies is broke, what's this committee going to do? Shake them by the ankles and see what falls out of their pockets?"

"Ambassador, I offer three things in response. First, individuals of all financial statuses exist in member nations, despite some national stereotypes--my own nation, for example, is a liberal democracy with one of the lowest wealth gaps in the world. Second, the victim of the crime is almost always left worse off than the perpetrator, for the reasons stated in the proposal and in the note I attached as courtesy to my fellow ambassadors. And third, almost all nations which use restitution consider the perpetrator's ability to pay as a factor in determining whether to order restitution (when it is discretionary) and, if so ordered, how much must be paid."
Barfleur: Unus pro omnibus et omnes pro uno
Citizen of The East Pacific
“Sweatpants are a sign of defeat. You lost control of your life so you bought some sweatpants.”
― Karl Lagerfeld
Ambassador: Roger MacGeorge
Military Attaché: Colonel Lyndon Q. Ralston
Co-author, GA#534.
The Barfleurian World Assembly Mission can be found at Room 1903, Floor 19, WAHQ.

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Wayneactia
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Postby Wayneactia » Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:24 pm

Bananaistan wrote:"Nearly everyone in the so called liberal democracies is broke, what's this committee going to do? Shake them by the ankles and see what falls out of their pockets?"

Just refuse to recognize the committee. The U.S. does it all the time in regards to the ICC.

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Barfleur
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Postby Barfleur » Thu Apr 08, 2021 12:03 pm

Wayneactia wrote:
Bananaistan wrote:"Nearly everyone in the so called liberal democracies is broke, what's this committee going to do? Shake them by the ankles and see what falls out of their pockets?"

Just refuse to recognize the committee. The U.S. does it all the time in regards to the ICC.

OOC: There is an important distinction, in that the ICC is an international court, whereas all the WAJC would be doing in my proposal is cross-border enforcement of restitution ordered by national courts. The United States does enforce the judgements of foreign courts, with some exceptions (such as the SPEECH Act, which specifically prevents United States courts from recognizing judgements for libel and defamation unless the party sued received at least the same rights they would have received in a United States court, or would have been found liable if sued in the United States).
Barfleur: Unus pro omnibus et omnes pro uno
Citizen of The East Pacific
“Sweatpants are a sign of defeat. You lost control of your life so you bought some sweatpants.”
― Karl Lagerfeld
Ambassador: Roger MacGeorge
Military Attaché: Colonel Lyndon Q. Ralston
Co-author, GA#534.
The Barfleurian World Assembly Mission can be found at Room 1903, Floor 19, WAHQ.

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Imperium Anglorum
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Fri Apr 09, 2021 11:31 pm

Elsie Mortimer Wellesley. We are unwilling to enforce judgements against our citizens which are not brought under laws which we believe to be fairly written under what we believe to underly foundations of justice and given under process which we believe to be fairly administered, both substantively and procedurally, at a level which may exceed that of World Assembly law. Moreover, as the section of delivering up a person who flees from one country to another is likely a form of extradition, that section would have to accord harmoniously with GA 147 'Extradition Rights'.
Last edited by Imperium Anglorum on Fri Apr 09, 2021 11:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Barfleur
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Postby Barfleur » Sat Apr 10, 2021 9:43 am

Imperium Anglorum wrote:Elsie Mortimer Wellesley. We are unwilling to enforce judgements against our citizens which are not brought under laws which we believe to be fairly written under what we believe to underly foundations of justice and given under process which we believe to be fairly administered, both substantively and procedurally, at a level which may exceed that of World Assembly law. Moreover, as the section of delivering up a person who flees from one country to another is likely a form of extradition, that section would have to accord harmoniously with GA 147 'Extradition Rights'.

"A characteristically observant point, ambassador. I have reworded much of the proposal to ensure that a person is not required to pay restitution unless convicted in a fair trial, and that the defendant's ability to pay is factored into the manner in which restitution is ordered. As to whether the law is considered fair, or even a good idea for that matter, I fail to see the relevance--a person who willingly travels to another nation agrees to follow the local laws. What my government does is issue travel advisories informing travelers that a specific nation has particularly strict laws (whether in general or about a specific subject, such as drug use or appropriate dress) so that people can make an informed decision as to whether or not they want to go to such nation, knowing they will have to obey those laws in the duration of their stay. And finally, the proposal only applies to member nations, whose government and legal systems are subject to international law."
Barfleur: Unus pro omnibus et omnes pro uno
Citizen of The East Pacific
“Sweatpants are a sign of defeat. You lost control of your life so you bought some sweatpants.”
― Karl Lagerfeld
Ambassador: Roger MacGeorge
Military Attaché: Colonel Lyndon Q. Ralston
Co-author, GA#534.
The Barfleurian World Assembly Mission can be found at Room 1903, Floor 19, WAHQ.

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Imperium Anglorum
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Sat Apr 10, 2021 12:35 pm

Elsie. Extraterritorial and universal jurisdiction exist.
Last edited by Imperium Anglorum on Sat Apr 10, 2021 12:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Author: 1 SC and 42 GA resolutions
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Barfleur
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Postby Barfleur » Sun Apr 11, 2021 8:09 am

Imperium Anglorum wrote:Elsie. Extraterritorial and universal jurisdiction exist.

"Ambassador, how would extraterritorial jurisdiction apply to judgements issued against Imperial citizens (subjects?), which formed the basis of your prior opposition? And as for universal jurisdiction, that almost exclusively applies to crimes of a high magnitude, such as piracy and genocide. Why should victims of such crimes (or any crime for that matter, but especially those since you brought up the point) be denied restitution on jurisdictional grounds?"
Barfleur: Unus pro omnibus et omnes pro uno
Citizen of The East Pacific
“Sweatpants are a sign of defeat. You lost control of your life so you bought some sweatpants.”
― Karl Lagerfeld
Ambassador: Roger MacGeorge
Military Attaché: Colonel Lyndon Q. Ralston
Co-author, GA#534.
The Barfleurian World Assembly Mission can be found at Room 1903, Floor 19, WAHQ.

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Imperium Anglorum
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Sun Apr 11, 2021 1:32 pm

Barfleur wrote:
Imperium Anglorum wrote:Elsie. Extraterritorial and universal jurisdiction exist.

"Ambassador, how would extraterritorial jurisdiction apply to judgements issued against Imperial citizens (subjects?), which formed the basis of your prior opposition? And as for universal jurisdiction, that almost exclusively applies to crimes of a high magnitude, such as piracy and genocide. Why should victims of such crimes (or any crime for that matter, but especially those since you brought up the point) be denied restitution on jurisdictional grounds?"

Universal jurisdiction can exist for many crimes beyond just that commonly used with piracy. There are no limitations on the extent to which a member nation can claim jurisdiction. Similarly, one could easily create, say, a national security law penalising interference or obstruction of one's nation's government functions by any person regardless of nationality at any time. I am not entirely willing to enforce judgements issued by a nation like Tinfect against Anglican citizens for advocating boycotts of Tinfect's goods and defaming Tinfect's meagre export concerns.

Author: 1 SC and 42 GA resolutions
Maintainer: GA Passed Resolutions
Developer: Communiqué and InfoEurope
Toxic villainous globalist kittehs
Delegate for Europe
Elsie Mortimer Wellesley (EMW); OOC unless otherwise indicated
Ideological Bulwark 285, WALL delegate
Dastardly villain providing free services to the community sans remuneration

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Barfleur
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Postby Barfleur » Wed Apr 14, 2021 5:16 pm

Imperium Anglorum wrote:
Barfleur wrote:"Ambassador, how would extraterritorial jurisdiction apply to judgements issued against Imperial citizens (subjects?), which formed the basis of your prior opposition? And as for universal jurisdiction, that almost exclusively applies to crimes of a high magnitude, such as piracy and genocide. Why should victims of such crimes (or any crime for that matter, but especially those since you brought up the point) be denied restitution on jurisdictional grounds?"

Universal jurisdiction can exist for many crimes beyond just that commonly used with piracy. There are no limitations on the extent to which a member nation can claim jurisdiction. Similarly, one could easily create, say, a national security law penalising interference or obstruction of one's nation's government functions by any person regardless of nationality at any time. I am not entirely willing to enforce judgements issued by a nation like Tinfect against Anglican citizens for advocating boycotts of Tinfect's goods and defaming Tinfect's meagre export concerns.

"That is certainly a good point. I have edited section 5 of the proposal to address these concerns.
"We also welcome feedback from other delegation which may have something to say about this proposal."
Barfleur: Unus pro omnibus et omnes pro uno
Citizen of The East Pacific
“Sweatpants are a sign of defeat. You lost control of your life so you bought some sweatpants.”
― Karl Lagerfeld
Ambassador: Roger MacGeorge
Military Attaché: Colonel Lyndon Q. Ralston
Co-author, GA#534.
The Barfleurian World Assembly Mission can be found at Room 1903, Floor 19, WAHQ.

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North Supreria
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Postby North Supreria » Thu Apr 15, 2021 7:55 am

North Supreria would like to compliment the creator of this proposal / draft. The proposal looks good and will lead to more social policy in the WA member states and we can only applaud that. North Supreria would fully support this proposal in its current form, already.
North Supreria "United and Strong"
Leo Paterson, representative of North Supreria
Delegate of The Red and Green Alliance


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