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Child Justice Act, 2008

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To establish a criminal justice system for children, who are in conflict with the law and are accused of committing offences, in accordance with the values underpinning the Constitution and the international obligations of the Republic; to provide for the minimum age of criminal capacity of children; to provide a mechanism for dealing with children who lack criminal capacity outside the criminal justice system; to make special provision for securing attendance at court and the release or detention and placement of children; to make provision for the assessment of children; to provide for the holding of a preliminary inquiry and to incorporate, as a central feature, the possibility of diverting matters away from the formal criminal justice system, in appropriate circumstances; to make provision for child justice courts to hear all trials of children whose matters are not diverted; to extend the sentencing options available in respect of children who have been convicted; to entrench the notion of restorative justice in the criminal justice system in respect of children who are in conflict with the law; and to provide for matters incidental thereto.


Last update: December 2014

Copyright: This Act reproduced under Government Printers Copyright Authority 10154 dated 20 March 1996

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Latest Developments:


The Child Justice Act, 2008 (Act No. 75 of 2008) has been amended by section 25 of the Legal Aid South Africa Act, 2013 (Act No. 39 of 2014), Government Gazette 38315, Notice No. 1013, dated 9 December 2014.


The Child Justice Act, 2008 (Act No. 75 of 2008) has been amended by Judicial Matters Amendment Act, 2014 (Act No. 14 of 2014), Notice No. 387, Government Gazette 37663, dated 19 May 2014.


The Child Justice Act, 2008 (Act No. 75 of 2008) has been added to the site, being Notice No. 549 in Government Gazette No. 32225 dated 11 May 2009.