Defamation, slander, libel and violations of privacy
The criminal law protects not only the honor, but also the secret or private domain.
Offences against honour are as frequent as they are complex (defamation, slander or insult). The main difficulty will consist in proving the existence of incriminating remarks, then it will be necessary to identify their author before demonstrating their attacking character to the honor.
Above all, in some cases the accused may escape any criminal sanction thanks to certain liberating evidence. This will be the case in matters of defamation when he brings the double proof that 1) there was a public or private interest in making the statements complained of and (2) they are true or he believed them to be true in good faith. This will also be the case in matters of insult when the insulted person has directly provoked the insult by reprehensible conduct.
Offenses against the secret or private domain incriminate a wide variety of behaviors and are increasingly frequent given the development of new technologies. The Swiss Criminal Code thus outlaws behaviors such as opening mail addressed to third parties, recording conversations between other persons, observing or recording facts that cannot be perceived by everyone, harassment by means of a communication facility or the removal of personal data. This applies to both individuals and authorities.
For this category of offences as well, the law contains subtleties that allow the person prosecuted to escape any criminal sanction.
Our lawyers are at your disposal to advise and defend you in the context of these offences, for which a perfect understanding and mastery of new information technologies are often decisive.
- Offenses against honor defamation (173 CP), slander (174 CP), defamation and slander against a dead or absent person (175 CP), insult (177 CP).
- Offences against the secret or private domain Violation of private secrets (179 StGB), eavesdropping and recording of conversations between other persons (179bis StGB), unauthorized recording of conversations (179ter StGB), violation of the secret or private domain by means of a camera (179quater StGB), putting into circulation and advertising of eavesdropping, sound recording and camera equipment (179sexies StGB), misuse of a telecommunications facility (179septies StGB), theft of personal data (179novies StGB).