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Before assessing the origins of the magistrate court, there will be a brief examination of what a magistrate is and what their functions are. Following from this, a brief insight into the origins of the magistrate court will be given, as it is important to understand the origins of any system as this will inform the reader of the initiative behind the original concept.
After discussing the origins of the system, the procedure of appointment will then be discussed. This process will then be examined when the analysis is focused upon the procedures contained within the Magistrate court for assessing the guilt of a defendant.
As a defendant will be denied a trail by jury, the system in place for the appointment of these magistrates is of paramount importance, as all individuals must be judged by their peers. If, after considering the evidence, the current system is deemed to be defective, then possible solutions will be considered to improve the present situation.
The article will conclude that although the current system is far from perfect, it serves as a significant filter for more serious crimes which are tried in the Crown Court by a jury.
What is a Magistrate? In the courts of England and Wales, it is the function of a magistrate to hear prosecutions for summary offences. They have the power to make orders in regard to and placing additional requirements on offenders.
A Critical Analysis of the Crown Courtextending to shorter periods of custody, fines, probation and community service orders, and a miscellany of other options. Magistrates hear committal proceedings for indictable offences, and establish whether sufficient evidence exists to pass the case to a higher court for trial and sentencing.
Magistrates have power to pass summary offenders to higher courts for sentencing when, in the opinion of the magistrate, a penalty greater than can be given in magistrates court is warranted. The function of a magistrate is of great importance, but where did they originally come from?
Origins of the Magistrate Court The origins of the magistrate system can be seen to have been initiated in the 12th century. Richard I Richard the Lion heart commissioned certain knights in England to keep the Kings peace in unruly areas. By the 14th century, a new phrase had been coined to describe individuals who had accepted the responsibility of keeping the peace.
Department for Constitutional Affairs [DCA] If a magistrate is responsible for presiding over certain criminal cases, then there must be a proficient system in place to appoint these individuals.
The Appointment Process of Magistrates The Municipal Corporations Act provided for Justices of the Peace to be nominated by the Lord Chancellor for the boroughs, in consultation with local advisers.
The county benches, however, continued to be confirmed by the Lord Chancellor by way of the nomination of the Lord Lieutenants, who had their own methods for finding suitable candidates. The system was inadequate and was challenged by the Liberal Government in as there were too many conservatives sitting on the benches.
The Royal Commission on the Appointment of Justice of the Peace in recommended the institution of an Advisory committee system. A year later Advisory Committees on which Liberals and Conservatives were equally represented had been set up in most counties to advise Lord Lieutenants on nominations.
A few years later the boroughs had also formed advisory committees. Originally, appointment to these committees was for life, however, inLord Cave introduced appointment for 6 years and ordered half the committees to retire by rotation every three years.
If we are all to be judged by our peers, then a magistrate should be just that. The problem is, however, that the appointment process is engineered towards professional people who share very little with the people that they judge.
Assessing Guilt in a Magistrate Court As stated above, magistrates will decide on the guilt of a defendant. If one looks at the application process as provided on the department for constitutional affairs, the qualities needed are good character, ability for understanding and communication, social awareness, maturity and a sound temperament, sound judgment and a commitment to the job.
These are all admiral qualities, yet these are not imposed upon any jury that sits in judgment of more serious cases. Why is this so? Nevertheless, the statistics speak for themselves. Most magistrates are white, middle class males.
If one considers that defendants should be judged by their peers, it would be interesting to see how white, middle class males go out stealing cars, or indeed committing other petty criminal offences.Analysis. 1. The issue. This case involves a first amendment issue regarding the right of a city to limit expression.
2. The law.
The first amendment of the U.S. constitution prohibits the federal government from making any law abridging the freedom of speech. Other parts of the defense include the opening and closing arguments and the cross-examination during the prosecution phase.
Since a defence is raised by the defendant in a direct attempt to avoid what would otherwise result in liability, the defendant typically holds the burden of proof. This Article is brought to you for free and open access by the Yale Law School Faculty Scholarship at Yale Law School Legal Scholarship Repository.
It has been accepted for inclusion in Faculty Scholarship Series by an authorized administrator of Yale Law School Legal Scholarship Repository. For more information, please [email protected] As part of their DNA examination, the justices looked at the Office of Chief Medical Examiner’s use of “high-sensitivity” DNA analysis, a testing-method that the New York City department.
A defense attorney taking the position that no offense happened might claim that witnesses' versions of events are untrue or that the client's actions didn't satisfy all the elements of the offense.
Below are a couple concepts within the "didn't do it" line of defense: the presumption of innocence and alibi.
The principle is named for the Supreme Court case Chevron U.S.A., Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., which involved a dispute over the Environmental Protection Agency’s interpretation of a provision of the Clean Air Act Amendments of