Q:

What is the purpose of criminal law?

A:

Quick Answer

The purpose of criminal law is to protect society by facilitating the detection and prosecution of criminal actions while protecting the rights of the accused. Cornell University describes criminal law as the means by which the state prosecutes and punishes individuals charged with violating the law.

 Know More

Full Answer

Wikipedia cites five basic theories underpinning the purpose of criminal law. Retribution is one of the most commonly held reasons for criminal law, as it is felt that criminals deserve suffering for having broken the law. Deterrence is another purpose. With deterrence, it is argued, others might be dissuaded from breaking the law after seeing the punishment of convicted persons. Incapacitation is also advanced as a purpose for criminal law. In this sense, the criminal is rendered harmless simply by being removed from society for the duration of the prison term. Rehabilitation is sometimes advocated for those convicted of illegal activities. It is sometimes attempted through job training, remedial education and placement in drug and alcohol treatment programs. Finally, restoration is occasionally cited as a function of the legal system. This principle borrows much from civil law and sees the purpose of criminal courts as encouraging the guilty to make restitution for their crimes.

Learn more about Crime

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the differences between the crime control model and the due process model?

    A:

    The major difference between the crime control model and the due process model of law enforcement is that crime control works to repress criminal activity, and due process works to protect a person's rights. Crime control is more concerned with the community as a whole, and due process places its concern on the individual.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a career criminal?

    A:

    A career criminal repeatedly uses criminal means to finance his life or lifestyle; he is considered a repeat offender. Crimes committed by career criminals often include robbery and theft.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is considered a criminal offense?

    A:

    About says there are three different types of criminal offenses: infractions, misdemeanors and felonies. Infractions do not require jail time. Misdemeanors sometimes require jail time of 12 months or less. Felonies are quite serious and require a greater amount of jail time.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a Newton hearing?

    A:

    A Newton hearing is an uncommon legal procedure in British law that takes place in the event that the defense pleads guilty on facts that are different from the allegations of the prosecution. In such a situation, the judge sits without a jury, hears the claims of both sides and tries to decide which party is telling the truth.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore