Federal Criminal Court
The Federal Criminal
Court rules at two instances on criminal cases of particular interest for the
Swiss Confederation. It also decides on appeals
against the Office of the Attorney General or other prosecution and legal
assistance authorities as well as on conflicts of jurisdiction between cantons
or the Confederation and cantons.
Functions of the Federal Criminal Court
criminal offences are judged by cantonal courts. The Federal Criminal Court
rules on criminal cases of particular interest for the Confederation, including
criminal offences committed by or against federal employees, offences involving
explosives, counterfeiting, cross-border economic crime, organised crime, corruption
and money laundering as well as aviation offences.
The Federal Criminal Court reviews rulings issued by federal
prosecution authorities as well as authorities providing international mutual
assistance for criminal matters. It also rules on conflicts of jurisdiction
between prosecution authorities.
Organisation of the Federal Criminal Court
Federal Criminal Court consists of a Criminal, a Lower Appeals and a
Higher Appeals Chamber. Criminal Chamber judgments can be subject to appeal
before the Higher Appeals Chamber. The latter has only been established in
2019. Most of the Lower as well as the Higher Appeals Court judgments can be
referred to the Federal Court.
The Court has 20 tenured and 13 part-time judges. Some 60
employees support them. The
Federal Criminal Court's management bodies are the Administrative
Commission and the Plenary Assembly (consisting of all tenured judges).
President: Sylvia Frei
Particularities of the Federal Criminal Court
A criminal procedure before the Federal Criminal Court may refer to several
individuals and be multi-lingual, making translations necessary. At times
special security measures have to be taken for the hearings. The written
judgment in large procedures involving several parties regularly far exceeds a
Criminal procedures often have an international relation,
especially in the area of economic crime and terrorism. The Lower Appeals Court
decides amongst others if Switzerland may extradite a person to another state
or if evidence (mostly bank records) is to be handed out to another state.
Criminal Chamber: cases by subject matter in 2019