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Suspension

Verified 24 March 2020 - Directorate of Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister), Ministry of Justice

The suspension suspends the execution of all or part of the sentence imposed (imprisonment or fine). It may be revoked in the event of non-compliance with the obligations imposed on the convicted person and/or in the event of a new offense. There are various types of conditional sentences: simple reprieve, probationary reprieve, probation reprieve, and community service reprieve (GIT). Since March 24, 2020, the only two types of reprieve that can be granted are a simple reprieve and a probationary reprieve.

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Sentence before March 24, 2020

Before March 24, 2020, the court could issue three types of stay: simple reprieve, probation or community service.

What is it about?

A simple stay suspends the execution of a sentence of imprisonment and/or a fine for a period of time known as a probation period. The simple conditional sentence thus precludes the firm sentence, which must be completed.

The simple reprieve can be:

  • total, i.e. the entire penalty of fine and/or imprisonment is suspended
  • or partial, that is, a part of the sentence is suspended and another part, which is firm, must be carried out.

For example, if a person is sentenced to 5 years in prison, 2 of which are suspended simply, that means that he is sentenced to 3 years in prison, and 2 years in prison with a suspended sentence. This person must carry out the 3-year prison sentence. The 2-year suspended sentence will only be served if the suspended sentence is revoked.

Sentences that may be subject to a simple stay

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Total stay

The suspension may be applied to the following sentences:

  • imprisonment for up to 5 years,
  • fine and day fine, whatever the amount,
  • restrictive sentence.

Partial suspension

Partial reprieve may be applied to:

  • imprisonment for up to 5 years,
  • fine and day fine, whatever the amount.

FYI  

in the case of a partial stay, the probation period for the conditional sentence shall be suspended for the time when the sentence is served.

Sentenced persons eligible for a single stay

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The person was never convicted

The stay may apply in all cases.

The person has already been sentenced

To a prison sentence
She is being retried for a crime or misdemeanor

A simple reprieve may not in any case be pronounced if the person has already been sentenced to a prison sentence (with or without a reprieve) within 5 years before the facts that justified the new sentence.

She is being retried for a misdemeanor

The sentence may be suspended, even if the person has been sentenced to prison before.

To a penalty other than imprisonment
She is being retried for a crime or misdemeanor

If the person has been sentenced within 5 years before the act to a fine or to a withdrawal of right, the reprieve may be applied only to the prison sentence imposed.

The penalty of fine or withdrawal of a right pronounced in this case will necessarily be a firm penalty.

She is being retried for a misdemeanor

If the person has been sentenced within 2 years before the act to a fine or to a withdrawal of right, the reprieve may be applied only to the prison sentence imposed.

The penalty of fine or withdrawal of a right pronounced in this case will necessarily be a firm penalty.

Procedure

The application of the stay is decided by the court in charge of the case. The reprieve is given at the same time as the sentence.

If the single stay is respected

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Total stay

The offender shall respect the stay if he does not commit a new offense within 5 years of the day on which the sentence became final (i.e. after the appeal period).

In this case, the sentence will not be carried out and it will be deleted from Bulletin No. 2 of the criminal record, but will remain on Bulletin No. 1.

Partial suspension

The offender shall respect the stay if he does not commit a new offense within 5 years of the day on which the sentence became final (i.e. after the appeal period).

In this case, the part of the sentence with the simple reprieve is considered non-avenue. This means that it can no longer be executed. The hard part of the sentence must be carried out.

But if the hard part of the sentence is a sentence of imprisonment and it could not be carried out before the end of the probation period of the simple reprieve, it can no longer be carried out.

Warning  

if after 5 years, an offense is found to have been committed within the trial period, the simple stay may be revoked.

If the simple reprieve is not respected

A simple reprieve may be revoked if the convicted person again commits an offense within the probation period.

Revocation is not automatic, and the retrial court must issue a specific decision that pronounces it.

The court that revokes the stay may decide to carry out all or part of the suspended sentence.

If the initial reprieve was a partial reprieve, the revocation of the reprieve can only be pronounced once. The suspended sentence cannot be revoked repeatedly.

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The initial stay was for a crime or offense

The new sentence is a prison sentence

The suspended sentence may be revoked and the suspended sentence may be enforced if:

  • the convicted person commits a new crime or a new offense within 5 years afterto judgment has become final,
  • and is sentenced to a hard prison sentence.

FYI  

the court that revokes the stay may also make a special and reasoned decision to incarcerate the offender.

The new conviction is a fine or withdrawal of a right

The suspended sentence may be revoked and the suspended sentence may be enforced if:

  • the convicted person commits a new crime or a new offense within 5 years afterto judgment has become final,
  • and is sentenced to a penalty other than imprisonment, i.e. a fine or the withdrawal of a right.

For example, if a person is sentenced to €1000 a suspended fine and, in a new case, a fine of €2000, the first conviction may be enforced for non-compliance with the conditional sentence.

However, if the conditional sentence is a prison sentence, there can be no revocation of the reprieve. For example, if a person is sentenced to 1 year in prison with a suspended sentence and then, in another case, to €1000 the conditional sentence cannot be carried out for non-compliance with the conditional sentence.

If the initial reprieve was a partial reprieve, the revocation of the reprieve can only be pronounced once.

For example, on a 1to trial, a person is sentenced to €3000 of which €2000 suspended. On a 2second the court decided to revoke part of his stay and asked him to pay €1000 fine. Then stay €1000 fine to be paid, resulting from the initial stay. But no court will be able to ask for payment of this fine, even in case of 3second trial within 5 years.

The court that revokes the stay may also take a special and reasoned decision to have the convicted person incarcerated.

The original stay was for a ticket

The stay may be revoked if the convicted person commits certain offenses within 2 years after the 1to judgment has become final.

The offenses that may result in the revocation of the stay are:

  • Crime
  • Delirium
  • Contravention of 5second class.

The suspended sentence can then be carried out.

What is it about?

A suspended sentence suspends the execution of a fine or imprisonment, provided that the convicted person complies with the obligations and prohibitions laid down by the court.

The test shall last at least one year.

The suspended sentence may be total, i.e. it fully covers the prison sentence or the fine imposed.

The suspended sentence may also be partial, i.e. it does not fully cover the prison sentence or fine imposed. In this case, part of the sentence is a firm sentence and the other part is a suspended and probation sentence.

For example, if a person is sentenced to 5 years in prison, 2 of which are suspended with probation, that means that he or she is sentenced to 3 years in prison and 2 years in prison with a suspended sentence and probation. This person must carry out the 3-year prison sentence. The 2-year suspended sentence will only be imposed in the event of failure to comply with the probation order.

Terms

The suspended sentence may apply to prison sentences of up to 5 years (10 years in the case of a repeat offense), for a crime or offense.

Total probation cannot be pronounced if the person is:

  • She has already been sentenced twice to a suspended sentence with probation (SME) or with community service (STIG) for similar offenses and is reoffending
  • She has committed certain serious offenses (intentional violence, sexual assault or abuse, aggravated offense of violence), that an EMS or STIG has already been pronounced for a similar offense and that she is recidivism
  • A socio-judicial follow-up is given at the same time, or if a work of general interest TIG has been pronounced as the main penalty.

FYI  

in the event that the person has committed certain serious offenses, has already been convicted of a similar offense and is reoffending, the partial reprieve is possible.

Duration

The convicted person must respect these obligations for a period, called test period. The duration of the test period shall be fixed by the court. It varies depending on whether the offender is recidivism or not.

  • If the offender is not a repeat offender, the trial period shall be between 1 and 3 years.
  • If the offender is a repeat offender, the trial period is between 1 and 5 years
  • In the event of double recidivism, the test period is between 1 and 7 years.

The period of probation is suspended during any period of incarceration (house arrest under electronic bracelet, pretrial detention, and imprisonment in prison or arranged by bracelet, on day parole or on placement outside).

FYI  

the enforcement judge (Jap), who controls the probation, may order, on his own initiative or on request of the public prosecutor, an extension of the duration of the probation period in the event of non-compliance.

Obligations

The obligations of the sentenced person shall be determined directly by the court issuing the sentence.

After conviction, the person is summoned before the enforcement judge (Jap).

The Jap shall inform it of the following mandatory control measures:

  • Notify social worker of changes in employment or residence
  • Notify the social worker of any displacement of more than 15 days and inform of his return
  • Respond to court or social worker summonses
  • Receive the social worker when traveling at home to give documents and information to monitor compliance
  • Inform the judge of any travel abroad before doing so
  • Obtain the Jap's authorization in the event of a move or change of employment, if this may hinder his obligations.

Depending on his situation and the offense he has committed, the convicted person may be subject to several other obligations or prohibitions, including:

  • Obligation to work or undergo training
  • Obligation to care (addictological, psychological, psychiatric...)
  • Obligation to repair damage caused by the infringement
  • Obligation to complete an internship
  • Prohibition of visits to designated areas
  • Prohibition of drinking
  • Prohibition against carrying a weapon
  • Prohibition to contact a specified person.

FYI  

the convicted person may ask the Jap to modify or withdraw an obligation by proving that the request is justified. For example, the duty of care is no longer necessary if medical analyzes show that there is no longer a drug addiction and the doctor confirms it.

Monitoring compliance 

Throughout the trial, the convicted person will be followed by a JAP.

The Jap shall lay down the procedures for the execution of the probation and shall monitor the actual execution.

He may summon the convicted person to remind him of his obligations in the event of non-compliance.

He may also extend the trial period or revoke part of the sentence.

Compliance can be monitored through the Prison Service for Integration and Probation (SPIP), which reports to the Jap.

If probation is granted

The probation shall be successful if the offender has complied with the obligations and prohibitions imposed on him or her and has not committed a new offense within the probation period.

In this case, the part of the sentence with the probation reprieve is executed and will be removed from the criminal record bulletin No. 2 but will remain on ballot No. 1.

The hard part of the sentence must be carried out. But if it has not been carried out before the end of the probation period with probation, it cannot be carried out.

Warning  

if it is discovered, after the expiry of the probation period, that an offense has been committed during the probation period, the probation period may be revoked, in whole or in part.

If probation is not respected

The enforcement judge may revoke the probation suspension for failure to comply with the offender's obligations, even if he has not committed a new offense.

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No new offense

The Jap may revoke the probation in case of failure to comply with the obligations imposed on the convicted person.

New offense

If the convicted person commits a new offense during the probation period, the probation period may be revoked:

  • by the court which sanctions the second offense, which may decide to enforce all or part of the original penalty
  • or by the enforcement judge, if the court has not revoked the stay when punishing the new offense.

The revocation of the probation sentence means that the person must carry out all or part of the sentence originally imposed (imprisonment or payment of a fine). The part of the sentence revoked shall be added to the new sentence handed down.

The decision ordering the partial revocation of the stay does not terminate the probation regime. The person will remain subject to his obligations upon release from prison for the remainder of his probation period.

Partial revocation may be ordered several times in the case of many new offenses.

What is it about?

Suspension with a work of general interest suspends the execution of a fine or imprisonment, provided that the convicted person performs work of general interest.

The stay always covers the entire penalty of fine or imprisonment.

The sentenced person must work free of charge for a legal person governed by public law, a legal person governed by private law entrusted with a public service task, or an authorized association.

In addition to the TIG to be made, the convicted person is subject to obligations and/or prohibitions.

This measure must be decided with the consent of the sentenced person.

FYI  

the suspended sentence with TIG can also be decided within the framework of a fine adjustment of a prison sentence of less than 6 months. The decision is made by the Jap.

Terms

The TIG conditional sentence applies to persons sentenced to a prison term of up to 5 years (10 years in the case of a repeat offense), for a crime or an offense.

But it cannot be pronounced in the following cases:

  • The person has already been sentenced twice to a probation or TIG for similar offenses and is reoffending
  • The person has committed a crime or a serious offense (willful violence, assault or sexual assault, aggravated assault) and has already had a probation or TIG for similar offenses and is re-offending
  • One of the following decisions was taken: socio-judicial follow-up, TIG as the main penalty, criminal constraint, or citizenship internship.

Duration

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Offense committed after March 25, 2020

Duration by type of offense

Duration

Contravention

Other case

Minimum Duration

20 hours

20 hours

Maximum Duration

120 hours

400 hours

Offense committed between October 2014 and March 24, 2020

Duration by type of offense

Duration

Contravention

Other case

Minimum Duration

20 hours

20 hours

Maximum Duration

120 hours

280 hours

Offense committed before October 2014

Duration by type of offense

Duration

Contravention

Other case

Minimum Duration

20 hours

20 hours

Maximum Duration

120 hours

210 hours

Warning  

the TIG must be carried out within a period fixed by the judge and which may not exceed 18 months.

Obligations

The obligations of the sentenced person shall be determined directly by the court issuing the sentence.

After conviction, the person is summoned before the enforcement judge (Jap).

The Jap shall inform it of the following mandatory control measures:

  • Notify social worker of changes in employment or residence
  • Notify the social worker of any displacement of more than 15 days and inform of his return
  • Respond to court or social worker summonses
  • Receive the social worker when traveling at home to give documents and information to monitor compliance
  • Inform the judge of any travel abroad before doing so
  • Obtain the Jap's authorization in the event of a move or change of employment, if this may hinder his obligations.

Depending on his situation and the offense he has committed, the convicted person may be subject to several other obligations or prohibitions, including:

  • Obligation to work or undergo training
  • Obligation to care (addictological, psychological, psychiatric...)
  • Obligation to repair damage caused by the infringement
  • Obligation to complete an internship
  • Prohibition of visits to designated areas
  • Prohibition of drinking
  • Prohibition against carrying a weapon
  • Prohibition to contact a specified person.

If executed correctly

If the TIG is carried out without incident and the obligations and prohibitions are respected during the entire period fixed by the court, the penalty will not be carried out. It will be removed from the criminal record No. 2, but will remain on the #1.

FYI  

if it is discovered after the end of the period fixed by the court that an offense has been committed during that period, the stay with community service may be revoked, in whole or in part.

In case of poor execution

The enforcement judge may revoke the stay with TIG if the work has not been performed or if the obligations imposed on the convicted person have not been met, even if he has not committed a new offense.

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No new offense

The enforcement judge may revoke some or all of the suspended sentence with TIG in the event of non-performance of work or non-compliance with the obligations imposed on the convicted person. This means that the person carries out all or part of the sentence originally imposed (imprisonment or payment of a fine).

New offense

If the convicted person commits a new crime or an offense within the time limit set for the performance of his TIG, the court may, after the Jap has given its opinion, revoke the suspended sentence in whole or in part.

This means that the person carries out all or part of the sentence originally imposed (imprisonment or payment of a fine). The suspended sentence is then added to the new firm sentence.

The JAP may revoke all or part of the stay if the court does not do so at the time of the new conviction.

Sentence imposed from 24 March 2020

Since March 24, 2020, the court has been able to grant only two types of stay: a simple reprieve or probation.

What is it about?

A simple stay suspends the execution of a sentence of imprisonment and/or a fine for a period of time known as a probation period. The simple conditional sentence thus precludes the firm sentence, which must be completed.

The simple reprieve can be:

  • total, i.e. the entire penalty of fine and/or imprisonment is suspended
  • or partial, that is, a part of the sentence is suspended and another part, which is firm, must be carried out.

For example, if a person is sentenced to 5 years in prison, 2 of which are suspended simply, that means that he is sentenced to 3 years in prison, and 2 years in prison with a suspended sentence. This person must carry out the 3-year prison sentence. The 2-year suspended sentence will only be served if the suspended sentence is revoked.

Sentences that may be subject to a simple stay

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Total stay

The suspension may be applied to the following sentences:

  • imprisonment for up to 5 years,
  • fine and day fine, whatever the amount,
  • restrictive sentence.

Partial suspension

Partial reprieve may be applied to:

  • imprisonment for up to 5 years,
  • fine and day fine, whatever the amount.

FYI  

in the case of a partial stay, the probation period for the conditional sentence shall be suspended for the time when the sentence is served.

Sentenced persons eligible for a single stay

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The person was never convicted

The stay may apply in all cases.

The person has already been sentenced

To a prison sentence
She is being retried for a crime or misdemeanor

A simple reprieve may not in any case be pronounced if the person has already been sentenced to a prison sentence (with or without a reprieve) within 5 years before the facts that justified the new sentence.

She is being retried for a misdemeanor

The sentence may be suspended, even if the person has been sentenced to prison before.

To a penalty other than imprisonment
She is being retried for a crime or misdemeanor

If the person has been sentenced within 5 years before the act to a fine or to a withdrawal of right, the reprieve may be applied only to the prison sentence imposed.

The penalty of fine or withdrawal of a right pronounced in this case will necessarily be a firm penalty.

She is being retried for a misdemeanor

If the person has been sentenced within 2 years before the act to a fine or to a withdrawal of right, the reprieve may be applied only to the prison sentence imposed.

The penalty of fine or withdrawal of a right pronounced in this case will necessarily be a firm penalty.

Procedure

The application of the stay is decided by the court in charge of the case. The reprieve is given at the same time as the sentence.

If the single stay is respected

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Total stay

The offender shall respect the stay if he does not commit a new offense within 5 years of the day on which the sentence became final (i.e. after the appeal period).

In this case, the sentence will not be carried out and it will be deleted from Bulletin No. 2 of the criminal record, but will remain on Bulletin No. 1.

Partial suspension

The offender shall respect the stay if he does not commit a new offense within 5 years of the day on which the sentence became final (i.e. after the appeal period).

In this case, the part of the sentence with the simple reprieve is considered non-avenue. This means that it can no longer be executed. The hard part of the sentence must be carried out.

But if the hard part of the sentence is a sentence of imprisonment and it could not be carried out before the end of the probation period of the simple reprieve, it can no longer be carried out.

Warning  

if after 5 years, an offense is found to have been committed within the trial period, the simple stay may be revoked.

If the simple reprieve is not respected

A simple reprieve may be revoked if the convicted person again commits an offense within the probation period.

Revocation is not automatic, and the retrial court must issue a specific decision that pronounces it.

The court that revokes the stay may decide to carry out all or part of the suspended sentence.

If the initial reprieve was a partial reprieve, the revocation of the reprieve can only be pronounced once. The suspended sentence cannot be revoked repeatedly.

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The initial stay was for a crime or offense

The new sentence is a prison sentence

The suspended sentence may be revoked and the suspended sentence may be enforced if:

  • the convicted person commits a new crime or a new offense within 5 years afterto judgment has become final,
  • and is sentenced to a hard prison sentence.

FYI  

the court that revokes the stay may also make a special and reasoned decision to incarcerate the offender.

The new conviction is a fine or withdrawal of a right

The suspended sentence may be revoked and the suspended sentence may be enforced if:

  • the convicted person commits a new crime or a new offense within 5 years afterto judgment has become final,
  • and is sentenced to a penalty other than imprisonment, i.e. a fine or the withdrawal of a right.

For example, if a person is sentenced to €1000 a suspended fine and, in a new case, a fine of €2000, the first conviction may be enforced for non-compliance with the conditional sentence.

However, if the conditional sentence is a prison sentence, there can be no revocation of the reprieve. For example, if a person is sentenced to 1 year in prison with a suspended sentence and then, in another case, to €1000 the conditional sentence cannot be carried out for non-compliance with the conditional sentence.

If the initial reprieve was a partial reprieve, the revocation of the reprieve can only be pronounced once.

For example, on a 1to trial, a person is sentenced to €3000 of which €2000 suspended. On a 2second the court decided to revoke part of his stay and asked him to pay €1000 fine. Then stay €1000 fine to be paid, resulting from the initial stay. But no court will be able to ask for payment of this fine, even in case of 3second trial within 5 years.

The court that revokes the stay may also take a special and reasoned decision to have the convicted person incarcerated.

The original stay was for a ticket

The stay may be revoked if the convicted person commits certain offenses within 2 years after the 1to judgment has become final.

The offenses that may result in the revocation of the stay are:

  • Crime
  • Delirium
  • Contravention of 5second class.

The suspended sentence can then be carried out.

Since 24 March 2020, the former suspended sentences with probation (SME), suspended sentences with community service (STIG) and criminal coercion have been combined within the probation system.

What is it about?

The probation suspension suspends the execution of a prison sentence, provided that the convicted person complies with the obligations and prohibitions laid down by the court.

The probation period can be total, i.e. the entire prison sentence is suspended and will not be carried out if the convicted person complies with the obligations and prohibitions set by the court.

The conditional sentence may be also or partially suspended, i.e., part of the sentence is suspended and another part, which is from prison, must be executed.

For example, a person sentenced to 4 years in prison, of which 3 years with probation will have to serve 1 year in prison and comply with the prohibitions and obligations set by the court not to carry out the other 3 years in prison.

Terms

Suspension of probation may be applied to:

  • maximum prison term of 5 years
  • or prison terms of up to 10 years, in the event of recidivism

Full probation cannot be granted if the offender is in a state of reoffending and:

  • he has already been sentenced twice to probation for identical or similar offenses
  • or that he has already been sentenced 1 time to probation for offenses identical to or similar to the offense being tried and that this new offense is serious (crime, intentional violence, sexual assault, sexual assault), or was committed with the aggravating circumstance of violence.

The probation may also not be pronounced if a community service sentence (GIT) and/or socio-judicial follow-up has been imposed by the court.

Procedure

The application of probation is decided by the court in charge of the case. The reprieve is given at the same time as the sentence.

Obligations

The obligations of the sentenced person shall be determined directly by the court issuing the sentence. The enforcement judge (JAP) will monitor compliance with these obligations. He is assisted by social workers to carry out this control, especially by the Prison Councilors of Integration and Probation (CPIP).

Certain measures are mandatory and all convicted persons must comply with them. The convicted person must: 

  • Notify the social worker of changes in employment, residence or travel of more than 15 days,
  • Respond to court or social worker summonses
  • Provide the social worker with all documents and information to verify that the obligations are fulfilled
  • Receive the social worker at home when he comes
  • Notify JAP of any travel abroad, before such travel takes place
  • Obtain authorization from the JAP in the event of a move or change of employment, if this may hinder his obligations

Depending on his situation and the offense he has committed, the convicted person may also be subject to several other measures chosen by the court or the JAP during the trial period. These measures may be obligations. For example:

  • Obligation to work or undergo training
  • Obligation to care for alcohol, drugs or to talk about his problems with a professional (psychologist or psychiatrist)
  • Obligation to repair damage caused by the infringement
  • Obligation to perform work of general interest
  • Obligation to take an internship

These measures can also be prohibitions. For example:

  • Do not enter into contact with certain persons,
  • Do not go to certain places (to someone's home, to drink, to a specific city...)
  • Do not hold or carry a weapon,
  • Do not engage in any activity involving regular contact with minors,
  • Do not drive

Duration

The convicted person must respect these obligations for a period, called probationary period. The duration of the probationary period shall be fixed by the court. It varies depending on whether the offender is recidivism or not.

  • If the offender is not a repeat offender, the probationary period shall be between 1 and 3 years.
  • If the offender is a repeat offender, the probationary period shall be between 1 and 5 years
  • In the event of double recidivism, the probationary period can range from 1 to 7 years.

The probationary period shall be suspended during any period of incarceration (house arrest under electronic bracelet, pretrial detention, and imprisonment in prison or arranged by bracelet, on day parole or on placement outside).

If probation is respected

If the convicted person has complied with all the obligations imposed on him during the probationary period, the sentence will not be carried out. It will be removed from the criminal record No. 2, but will remain on the #1.

If probation is not respected

The probation may be revoked. This means that the person carries out all or part of the sentence originally imposed.

The probation may be revoked if:

  • The convicted person failed to comply with his obligations or prohibitions during the probationary period (trial period). The probation can then be revoked by the JAP.
  • The offender committed a new offense during the probationary period. In this case, the probation may be revoked by:
    - the court which pronounces the new sentence, after opinion of the JAP. The revocation of the suspended sentence is in addition to the new firm sentence.
    - the JAP, if the court has decided not to revoke the sentence of probation.

The probation may be revoked in part or in whole.

If the probation is partially revoked, the person will remain subject to his or her obligations upon release from prison for the remainder of the probation period. Partial revocation may be made several times.

For example, a person is sentenced to 8 months imprisonment with probation and commits a new offense. The court will be able to sentence her to a prison sentence and also revoke 2 months of the 8 months of her previous probation sentence. The convicted person must then serve 2 months in prison, in addition to his new sentence. When he gets out of prison, he'll have six months of probation.