Bahrain MPs push tougher manslaughter laws
Manama, April 18, 2012
Bahrain’s parliament yesterday (April 17) approved amendments to the Penal Code that could result in up to three years in jail for anyone convicted of manslaughter.
However, the Shura Council must now approve the changes before they can come into effect.
The amendments approved by MPs also include a stricter sentence of up to a year in jail for anyone caught committing immoral acts in public, as well as a six-month prison sentence for any sexual harassment.
MP Ali Shamtoot argued that tougher penalties were needed, particularly in the case of policemen charged with manslaughter in connection with civilian deaths.
"Policemen are being prosecuted for manslaughter for killing people, despite coming armed with birdshot and knowing that people could be seriously hurt or even killed," he said during yesterday's session.
"Yet they are being dealt with as someone who was involved in a car accident or someone who killed another during a brawl."
MPs approved amendments that would result in jail sentences of up to three years for manslaughter, as well as an undisclosed fine to be determined by a court.
If manslaughter was the result of misjudgment during duty or unintentional use of authority, the minimum sentence would be a year in jail.
However, if more than one person was killed the punishment would be two to five years in jail.
If the person convicted of manslaughter was drunk or on drugs, the sentence would be three to 10 years in jail. – TradeArabia News Service