Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1313215
 
 

Citations (1)



 
 

Footnotes (240)



 


 



Prosecutorial Regulation Versus Prosecutorial Accountability


Stephanos Bibas


University of Pennsylvania Law School


University of Pennsylvania Law Review, Vol. 157, April 2009
U of Penn Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 08-50

Abstract:     
No government official has as much unreviewable power or discretion as the prosecutor. Few regulations bind or even guide prosecutorial discretion, and fewer still work well. Most commentators favor more external regulation by legislatures, judges, or bar authorities. Neither across-the-board legislation nor ex post review of individual cases has proven to be effective, however. Drawing on management literature, this article reframes the issue as a principal-agent problem and suggests corporate strategies for better serving the relevant stakeholders. Fear of voters could better check prosecutors, as could victim participation in individual cases. Scholars have largely neglected the most promising avenue of reform, namely changing the internal structure and management of prosecutors' offices. Leaders could do more to develop office cultures, norms, and ideals that value more than just maximizing conviction statistics. Hierarchical office structures and internal procedural and substantive office policies could promote deliberation, give fair notice, and increase consistency. Hiring, training, promotion, and tenure practices could better shape prosecutors and their behavior. Pay structures and feedback from judges, defense counsel, and victims could encourage good behavior. Finally, publishing more data on charges, convictions, plea bargains, and sentences could also improve accountability.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 58

Keywords: Criminal law, Prosecutorial discretion, accountability, management of prosecutors, election, oversight, feedback, open records, publication of prosecutorial data and information

JEL Classification: K14

Accepted Paper Series





Download This Paper

Date posted: December 9, 2008 ; Last revised: April 3, 2009

Suggested Citation

Bibas, Stephanos, Prosecutorial Regulation Versus Prosecutorial Accountability. University of Pennsylvania Law Review, Vol. 157, April 2009; U of Penn Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 08-50. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1313215

Contact Information

Stephanos Bibas (Contact Author)
University of Pennsylvania Law School ( email )
3501 Sansom Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States
215-746-2297 (Phone)
HOME PAGE: http://www.law.upenn.edu/cf/faculty/sbibas/
Feedback to SSRN


Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 1,702
Downloads: 412
Download Rank: 39,694
Citations:  1
Footnotes:  240

© 2014 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo5 in 0.359 seconds