Contemporary issues in criminal court procedure

Ward, Jennifer ORCID logoORCID: (2022) Contemporary issues in criminal court procedure. In: Challenges in Criminal Justice. Johnston, Ed, ed. Routledge Contemporary Issues in Criminal Justice and Procedure . Routledge, UK, pp. 65-84. ISBN 9780367698041, pbk-ISBN 9780367698072, e-ISBN 9781003143321. [Book Section] (doi:10.4324/9781003143321-5)


Criminal court procedure in the English and Welsh justice system is undergoing radical transformation that is producing a different side to courts justice and raises important due process questions. This chapter discusses various alterations that have been occurring. These include, the ongoing consideration of trial by jury with support for ‘judge only trials’ in some circumstances; the rapid decline in magistrate numbers that if replaced by single sitting professional judges would move us to a court system no longer underpinned by ‘lay justice’ and ‘participatory democracy’, but one akin to systems of ‘professional justice’. This carries its own benefits and criticisms. The incentivising of early guilty pleas so that trial hearings are no longer required; the increasing number of prosecutions administered through online methods with the introduction of the Single Justice Procedure Notice and the use of virtual court hearings, are other contemporary concerns arising in criminal court procedure. All of these raise important questions of neutrality. This chapter argues these alterations have been edging forward in significant ways, but have accelerated alongside the revised working practices brought about through the COVID-19 health pandemic. These may well become courtroom experiments that are here to stay.

Item Type: Book Section
Research Areas: A. > School of Law > Criminology and Sociology
Item ID: 35174
Notes on copyright: Copyright Year 2023
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Depositing User: Jenni Ward
Date Deposited: 23 Aug 2022 09:07
Last Modified: 23 Aug 2022 09:07

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