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Australian adversarial criminal justice system - Essay Example

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The criminal justice system in any country is one of the most difficult systems and processes to implement. It is difficult to implement because of the nature of the crimes themselves and because of the human elements involved in the criminal justice system…
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Australian adversarial criminal justice system
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Download file to see previous pages Just as humans are likely to commit errors of judgment, the criminal justice system, run by humans is likely to suffer such errors in judgment. These errors of judgment translate to guilty criminals going unpunished or being unapprehended, and to innocent individuals being sent to jail for crimes they did not commit. The terms “getting off on a technicality” are terms heard often enough when the legal provisions of the criminal justice system serve to protect the rights of all individuals, even those who are guilty. And yet these provisions are in place to protect the rights of the innocent and to afford due process of law. For which reason, most people remark and are resigned to the fact that when all is said and done the criminal justice system is about as fair and effective as we can reasonably expect. It is a statement which speaks of the need to “make do” because things “could have been worse.” It is important however to evaluate the difference and decide where the above statement indeed deserves the people’s resigned acceptance. This paper shall now consider the above statement and its merits in the actual criminal justice system. It shall consider the viability of the statement while assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the current Australian criminal justice system. ...
The best argument in this adversarial system is used to decide on the case. The parties have control over their case and the presentation of evidence in their favour. They also have freedom to use legal representation if they so desire (Stacy, 1999). The parties also decide if there is a need for a jury in a civil case. The judge’s role in this adversarial system is to ensure that the case proceedings are impartial and fair. He has to make his decision based on his independent decision and he must oversee the proceedings in order to ensure that the rules of court are followed. In effect, while a jury rules over issues of fact, the judge decides over issues of law (Victoria University, n.d). In this adversarial system, there is a need to secure the rules of evidence and procedure. Each court has its rules which are meant to ensure fair and equal treatment of adversarial parties. It also ensures that the jury is not distracted by unnecessary materials and evidence; that unreliable and unfairly obtained evidence is not admitted in the court proceedings; and that evidence which is purely of character nature is not allowed to be entered in evidence (Victoria University, n.d). This adversarial system protects the strict rules of evidence and procedure where hearsay evidence, irrelevant evidence, opinion evidence, evidence illegally obtained, and prior convictions, as well as evidence reflecting bad character is not admissible in evidence (Victoria University, n.d). In this system, the burden of proof lies with the plaintiff or the party initiating the case. It requires proof beyond reasonable doubt for criminal cases, and balance of probabilities for civil cases ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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