From March 12–14, the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) organized the first Russian-language mock trial training in Moldova. A total of 18 law students from Comrat State University and Tiraspol Filial of Moscow Academy of Economics and Law took part in the training held at the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) in Chisinau.
The interactive training was designed to enhance students’ skills to try criminal cases. While legal education in Moldova has improved over the years, there are opportunities for continued advancement.
“Skills-oriented courses are still missing from the university’s curriculum,” said Professor Tatiana Vizdoaga of Moldova State University during the training. She said that students receive good theoretical education that also addresses some lawyering skills. The practical exercises, however, provide students with hands-on opportunities to acquire the skills.
The training included both traditional lectures by law professors and defense attorneys, along with highly interactive exercises. The first day focused on case analysis, trial procedure and information utilization. The second day was devoted principally to practicing witness examinations. On the third day, students participated in a mock murder trial, assuming the roles of prosecutors, defense lawyers, defendant and witnesses. Following the trial, student presentations were evaluated by Moldova Supreme Court Judge Svetlana Filincova, who later answered questions from students. The NIJ provided training space free of charge.
Participating students said the training was helpful and expressed their interest in further similar trainings.
To learn more about our work in Moldova, contact the ABA Rule of Law Initiative at [email protected].