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Peru: New Provisions on Police Detention and on Crimes Discovered in Flagrante

(Sept. 9, 2009) On June 8, 2009, President Alan Garcia Perez of Peru promulgated Law No. 29372, amending the Code of Criminal Procedure. The changes include provisions of article 259, on police detention and on citizens' arrest for crimes discovered in flagrante, and the date of enforcement of articles 259 and 260.

According to the first paragraph of article 259, on police detention, the National Police of Peru may detain, without judicial mandate, persons caught in flagrante in the perpetration of a crime. The second paragraph provides the definition of flagrancy. There is flagrancy when the perpetration of a punishable act is current and, in that circumstance, the perpetrator is discovered, is pursued and captured immediately after the perpetration of the punishable act, or is caught with incriminating objects in his possession.

The third paragraph states that in the case of an offense or a crime punishable by a term of less than two years of deprivation of freedom, after interrogations about the perpetrator's identification and other matters of urgent investigation have been conducted, a less restrictive measure or the release of the perpetrator can be decreed.

The law stipulates that the provisions of articles 259 and 260 enter in force for the entire country on July 1, 2009. (Ley No. 29372, EL PERUANO [Official Gazette], June 9, 2009, available at