GCO 1990-2

April 25, 1990

AMENDMENTS TO THE RULES OF
CRIMINAL PROCEDURES FOR THE TRIAL
DIVISION OF THE SUPREME COURT OF THE
FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA

     The Court has made extensive amendments to the FSM Rules of Criminal Procedure pursuant to the Chief Justice's rulemaking authority under the FSM Const. art. XI, 9 (c).

     The great majority of the amendments are technical or stylistic and are not intended to introduce substantive changes.  A number of substantive amendments have been made as well, however.  The following are some of the most significant:

     1.  Arraignments have been eliminated from FSM criminal procedure.  Instead, the initial appearance, Rule 5, shall provide opportunity for the court to notify defendants of their rights and, at the trial court's discretion, to require defendants to plead.

     2.  The requirements of General Court Order 1985-9 have been included directly in the rules.  Thus, plea agreement procedures now require notice of the crime victims (Rule 11(e)), the government must give the victims notice of all proceedings (Rule 43(e)), and defendants under 23 years of age must have a parent or supervisor present at all proceedings (Rule 43(d)).

     3.  Rule 32.1(c) has incorporated the justice ombudsman's power to confine persons violating the terms of supervised release, as previously set forth in General Court Order 1985-5.

     4.  Subject to certain hearing requirement, Rule 46(a)(1)(E) authorizes pretrial detention where other means will not suffice to assure the presence of the defendant or the safety of the victim and the community.

     Numerous other more minor substantive changes also have been made, and all members of the bar are urged to examine the new rules carefully.

     NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the amended Rules of Criminal Procedure for the Trial Division of the Supreme Court of the Federated States of Micronesia issued on this date, April 25, 1990 shall govern all future criminal proceedings, and as far as just and practicable all criminal proceedings now pending, in the FSM Supreme Court trial division.

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