This paper takes on the issue of how different courts in the Ecuadorian judicial system interpret the constitutional and statutory provisions limiting the maximum duration of remand in criminal cases. The Ecuadorian constitution provides for two parallel judicial systems: The Ordinary Judicial Branch –headed by the National Court of Justice (NCJ)–, and the Constitutional Adjudication System –with the Constitutional Court (CC) at its pinnacle, and other courts, including the NCJ, as part of it–. While the first one deals with “ordinary” –including criminal– cases; the second one enforces the constitution by way of remedies against fundamental rights violations, such as habeas corpus. Concerning remand provisions, whilst the CC has just issued obiter dicta, different tribunals within the NCJ have had different interpretations, both when acting as ordinary and as constitutional magistrates. The paper explores who is entitled to make a binding interpretation.
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