National frameworks to address hate crime in Romania
This page provides information on the national frameworks to address hate crime in Romania. The information provided here should be viewed alongside data presented on Romania's hate crime report page.
Hate crime recording and data collection
The Romanian Police records all criminal offences in a dedicated database. Romanian investigative police officers have a duty to highlight all aggravating circumstances when registering criminal files that are under investigation. However, there are no designated procedures for recording hate crimes by the police. A working group has been created at the level of the Romanian Police to determine necessary changes to the registration and investigation of hate crimes.
Prosecution files and court files include information about aggravating circumstances. This information is replicated and centralized in the judicial statistics application used by the Ministry of Justice. These data have been collected since 2014.
At the start of 2018, the authorities established a statistical data collection mechanism, which introduced two new forms through which additional data on hate crimes are collected. The new mechanism provides for the monitoring of the use of the aggravating circumstance found in article 77, letter "h", of the Criminal Code. It also allows for the monitoring of criminal offences listed under Government Emergency Ordinance no. 31/2002, as well as for the tracking of hate crimes in the ECRIS judicial statistical system. The change was made by Annex 19 to Order no. 298/2017 of the Prosecutor General of the Prosecutor's Office attached to the High Court of Cassation and Justice, and amended Order no. 213/2015 on the organization and functioning of the information system of the Public Ministry.
Hate crime victim support
Support to hate crime victims is provided as part of the general victim support system in Romania. While hate crime victims are not explicitly defined in legislation, when identified by police they are automatically presumed to be vulnerable.
Some general measures to accommodate victims' needs include the following: interpretation services; legal aid; the use of audio-visual equipment when interviewing; information for victims on the release of the perpetrator; interviews in specially adapted rooms and in the presence of a psychologist or specialist in victim counselling; interviews conducted by the same person; and the provision of home security measures, a police escort and/or personal data protection. These measures can be applied by prosecutors ex officio or on request. All vulnerable victims are entitled to the medical care and psychological support provided by the state. Some general victim support and specialized hate crime victim support is provided by civil society organizations (CSOs) offering psychological and financial support, shelter or legal assistance. There is no quality control system for victim support service providers. The referral system relies on informal co-operation between CSOs and law enforcement.
There is an individual needs assessment procedure in place for police. As part of the procedure, victims must be informed of the available support services and referred to relevant victim support service providers. There are no policies or guidelines for criminal justice institutions on responding to the needs of hate crime victims. Police receive occasional training on hate crimes, including on sensitive and respectful treatment, which are organized in co-operation with CSOs or international organizations.
Hate crime victims benefit from the same procedural rights as all other crime victims in Romania. As such, hate crime victims have the right to participate in the entire criminal investigation, prosecution and judgment of the case, as well as the right to appeal the judgment. They can also launch a civil action to obtain compensation.
Plea bargaining is available in accordance with Romanian law.