In some criminal cases, the Prosecution Service will deem it necessary to keep you detained for a shorter or longer period while the case is being investigated.
A judge will decide whether the conditions for remanding you in custody are satisfied.
There must be a specific reason to suspect you for the offence with which the police have provisionally charged you. The offence must also have a certain degree of seriousness.
In addition, there must be grounds for remanding. These may be to secure your presence, to prevent you from committing further crimes, or to ensure that you cannot influence the investigation of the case. Finally, the deprivation of your liberty may be justified to avoid offending the sensibilities of others if you are at large before the case is closed.
If a judge decides in a preliminary statutory hearing that you are to be detained for more than 24 hours, you will be remanded in custody (unless the court simply maintains the arrest for up to 3 x 24 hours). Read more about arrests and preliminary statutory hearings.
The police or your defence counsel will be able to notify your relatives that you have been remanded in custody.
On the Prison and Probation Service website, your friends and relatives can read more about what to do while you are detained.
The judge will set a time limit for your custody. You can only be in custody for four weeks at a time.
You are entitled to have your case heard in both the district court and the high court. The high court may review the judge's decision to remand you in custody or release you if you or the Prosecution Service so request.
Extension of remand
If you are remanded in custody, and the police have not released you before the time limit for the remand expires, you must be brought before a judge when the time limit expires. In some situations, you and your defence counsel may agree that the conditions for continued custody are satisfied, and you can then consent to continued custody for a further four weeks or a shorter period without having to go before a judge.
A court hearing in which a judge decides whether the conditions for remand in custody are still satisfied is an extension of custody hearing. During a court hearing about an extension of the time limit for your remand in custody, the Prosecution Service must state why they still need to detain you. Your defence counsel will inform the judge about your position in this regard.
As a rule, all court hearings in Denmark are open to the public. This means that other people (including your relatives) and journalists have access to all court hearings. In some situations, however, it may be necessary to close the hearing to the public for some or all of the hearing
When your defence counsel and the Prosecution Service have given their views on the matter, and you have been given the opportunity to speak, the judge will make a decision on the matter. This is called an order. The order may stipulate that you are to be released, or that you are to remain in custody for a further period of a maximum of four weeks.
If necessary to the investigation of the case, the judge may decide to keep you in solitary confinement. This means that you will not be allowed to have contact with other inmates.
Supervised visits and correspondence
If you are remanded in custody, you will be placed in a local prison or a secure prison. The Prison and Probation Service runs the prisons in Denmark.
As a general rule, you are allowed to receive visits while in prison. The person who wants to visit you must apply to the police for permission. When you are remanded in custody, the police may deny you visitation privileges or decide to supervise the visit. This is done to avoid you influencing the investigation of the case. You are always entitled to an unsupervised visit from your defence counsel.
As a general rule, you are also allowed to receive and send letters. The police may read your letters and refuse to allow you to send or receive the letter if, for example, the contents are potentially detrimental to the investigation.
When you are subject to supervised visits and correspondence, your defence counsel is not allowed to forward information to your relatives without police permission.
Relatives of prisoners can find guidance on the Prison and Probation Service website.