France plans to allow cameras in court as part of justice reforms

FILE PHOTO: French Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti gestures as he speaks during a news conference after the weekly cabinet meeting discussions over a bill to fight what Macron has called Islamist separatism at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, December 9, 2020. REUTERS/Charles Platiau/Pool

PARIS (Reuters) – France plans to allow cameras into courtrooms for the first time as part of reforms to the country’s justice system, Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti said after a cabinet meeting.

Dupond-Moretti, a lawyer who joined President Emmanuel Macron’s cabinet last year, unveiled the draft bill that the government hopes will restore confidence in the courts.

“French people no longer have confidence in the country’s justice system,” Dupond-Moretti told reporters. “The publicity of the hearing is a great democratic guarantee.”

He cited a survey from French research institute Cevipof that found only 48% of French people had confidence in their judiciary, compared with 69% in Germany and 61% in Britain.

The survey showed they viewed the French process as too slow and not robust enough in some criminal cases.

Dupond-Moretti worked as a lawyer for 36 years before he was named justice minister with a brief to reform the system.

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