The Criminal Process


The criminal process 

There are different models of criminal justice and they are the crime control model and the due process model. 

A state will either adopt a due process model or a crime control model, there is very rarely the existence of a hybrid model as the key principles of the model conflicts with the other.

Evaluation: To declare that one of these models is superior to the other requires one to make a value judgment. The crime control model reflects conservative values, while the due process model reflects liberal values. Political climate determines which model shapes criminal justice policy at a specific time. During the politically liberal 1960s, the principles and policies of due process predominated in criminal justice. From the mid 1970s to the early twenty‐first century, conservatism has held sway as the dominant political philosophy, and conservatives have formulated criminal justice policies in the image of the crime control model.


There are 3 types of offences 

Summary, triable either way and indictable. 

Summary are lower-level crimes, they are heard at the Magistrates’ court and often result in a non-custodial sentence being passed. Examples are: Driving without a licence. Taking a vehicle without consent. Common assault. 

Triable either way cases can be heard in either Magistrates or Crown Court, they are mid-level crimes or the lower level of more serios crimes that have a large range of sentencing examples are: theft, ABH, deception.

Indictable offences are considered to be more serious or the most serious crimes that will almost certainly end up with a custodial sentence if found guilty. Examples are Murder, manslaughter, ****, robbery.

Mode of trial 

Triable either way cases are the only cases where the defendant can choose where they wish to have the case heard. In the event that the defendant doesn’t choose it is left to the Magistrate to decide where the case will take place. The magistrate will take in to account a number of factors when deciding where the trial will take place. Factors including the seriousness of the crime, the maximum sentence the Magistrate can impose, the defendant’s plea, prior convictions of the defendant. 

Sending for trial 

This means where a case is of an indictable offence and must be heard in the Crown Court.  

In these cases the defendant will appear in the Magistrates court in order to determine the key issues of the cases (funding of case, bail, use of exhibits and statements), the Magistrate will provide a statement of evidence…


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