Imperfect Justice: Anti-Roma Violence and Impunity

06 April 2011

Imperfect Justice: Anti-Roma Violence and Impunity

ERRC monitoring of the State response to 44 selected cases of anti-Roma violence in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia shows that many Romani victims of violent crimes do not secure justice. A limited number of perpetrators of violent attacks against Roma are successfully identified, investigated and prosecuted. Even fewer are eventually imprisoned for the crimes they have committed against Roma. The failure of law enforcement authorities to identify the perpetrators of crimes against Roma or to recognise racial motivation in a considerable number of investigations creates a climate of impunity and may encourage further acts of violence against Roma. Clear and effective guidance in addressing hate crimes is absent in the countries of this study. These findings may have a serious negative impact on the will of Romani individuals to report crimes committed against them to law enforcement authorities. Given the high occurrence of anti-Roma violence in the examined countries and other European countries, Governments must take a firm stance against such violence.

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