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The Criminal Justice System of England and Wales - Essay Example

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This is because the acts of the Parliament can override common law provisions. Moreover, its membership in the European Union requires it to follow the European community law.
The World Factbook of Criminal Justice Systems also said that the legal system in England and Wales is "adversarial" in all courts, including the juvenile courts. Its criminal justice is the "historical pioneer" of the common law type of legal system.
More often than not, the law evolves through the decisions made in previous individual cases while decisions in court influence certain perceptions and rules. Such practices might have originated from the fifth century while it was after 1066 when general perceptions regarding common law principles increased.
Also, the World Factbook of Criminal Justice Systems added that England and Wales' common legal systems were derived from the Acts of Union of 1536 and 1542. Moreover, the late 19th and 20th centuries have witnessed a boost in the number and scale of statutes and of delegated legislation in British law.
Just like in most countries, crime in England and Wales is classified and distinguished mostly on the basis of its seriousness. In addition, an offense may vary according to the procedure it is brought into trial. For example, if it's through a magistrates' court only, by indictment, or by the higher Crown court. It may also vary according to the sanction.
Criminal responsibility in England and Wales is 10, so those between ages 10 and 17 are forced to face a youth court if they are charged with a criminal offense. Its difference with the court for adults is that parents of the child offender may be charged with fines which they must pay and supervise their child's behavior.
In terms of drug use, the Misuse of Drugs Act of 1971 covers the terms and conditions. It listed drugs into classes A, B, or C. This act was intended to regulate the use and flow of drugs, according to the World Factbook of Criminal Justice Systems. And as in many countries all over the world, it is unlawful to produce, supply, possess, prepare, cultivate, and import or export and such substances.
World Factbook of Criminal Justice Systems said that 1994 data shows that there were 5.3 million recorded offenses in England and Wales, this would include indictable offenses and summary offenses, 26 percent of which were cleared. About 729 of the cases were homicide charges and 220,000 offenses of violence against persons. Meanwhile, only 19,600.of these offenses were classified to be serious.
During the same year, 5,039 rape cases were recorded which accounted to only one percent of the total recorded offenses. Meanwhile, an astounding 93 percent of the overall offenses were against property, including burglary, theft, criminal damages, and fraud. As for drug offenses, 17,569 cases were reported.
Not surprisingly, about half of the total recorded offenses were to be found in metropolitan police areas while rural areas had the lowest crime rates.
Judicial System
According to The Criminal Justice System Review, the criminal justice system of England and Wales has changed drastically. This is because before the introduction of the due process, those ...Show more


According to the World Factbook of Criminal Justice Systems, the British constitution is "a blend of statute law, precedent, and tradition dating back to the time of King Henry I." It also said that the three major statutes that define the British legal and political history were the Magna Carta (1215), the Bill of Rights (1688), and the Act of Settlement (1700).
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The Criminal Justice System of England and Wales
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