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On October 24, 1989, the Republic of Italy adopted a new Code of Criminal Procedure incorporating significant adversarial procedures into what had previously been a purely inquisitorial system. The architects of the new Code hope that giving the parties, rather than a judge, primary control over the investigation and resolution of cases will yield much-needed efficiencies: Italy, like all Western countries, is burdened with a tremendous backlog of criminal cases that its old inquisitorial system proved unable to handle.

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