Criminal Law and Human Rights (Introduction)
P.H.P.H.M.C. van Kempen (ed.), Criminal Law and Human Rights, The International Library of Essays on Criminal Law, England/USA: Ashgate, 2014
23 Pages Posted: 18 Apr 2017
Date Written: April 15, 2017
The significance of fundamental individual rights to substantive criminal law, criminal procedure law and sentencing law is undeniable for anyone who is familiar with the criminal justice system.
This chapter serves three general purposes. First, it intends to portray the meaning and rationale of those human rights that are most relevant to the criminal justice system, and their significance to criminal procedure, substantive criminal law, and criminal sentencing. Second, this tripartite structure serves as a framework for fourteen essays (that are republished in the volume to which this chapter is the introductory chapter), as a result of which it also becomes clear how these essay's subject matter relates to the human rights they enlarge upon, and to the criminal justice system in general. Many of these essays reiterate the tensions and similarities between criminal law and human rights law on which the chapter elaborates. Third, the intention is to present the reader with other significant literature on the various themes under discussion, for which reason many supplementary references to publications are contained in footnotes. In combination, this introduction and the various essays – which collectively cover almost the entire criminal justice system – offer both a general overview and in-depth examination of criminal law and human rights.
The fourteen essays have been chosen for their high quality, timeless approach and general attention to issues that are of universal interest and thus not too closely related to the technicalities of a specific criminal justice system. In combination with the introduction to this volume, the essays cover almost the entire criminal justice system and offer a general overview as well as an in-depth examination of criminal law and human rights.
Topics that are dealt with are: criminal law, criminal procedure, criminal justice, human rights, positive human rights obligations, presumption of innocence, pre-trial detention, privacy, fair trial, non bis in idem, principle of legality, limits to criminalisation, justification and excuse, and sentencing.
Keywords: criminal justice, human rights, presumption of innocence, pre-trial detention, privacy, fair trial, non bis in idem, principle of legality, criminalisation, justification and excuse, sentencing
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