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Criminal Law

Criminal Law (16th edn)

Michael Allen and Ian Edwards
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date: 18 July 2024

p. 11. Criminal law in contextlocked

p. 11. Criminal law in contextlocked

  • Michael J. Allen
  •  and Ian Edwards


Course-focused and contextual, Criminal Law provides a succinct overview of the key areas on the law curriculum balanced with thought-provoking contextual discussion. This introductory chapter answers the following questions: What is a crime? What purpose or function does the criminal law serve? What reasons are there for the criminalisation of some types of conduct? What are the purposes of punishment? What are the political and social contexts in which criminal law operates? The chapter provides an overview of key aspects of the criminal process, including mode of trial, the decision to prosecute, the burden and standard of proof, the functions of judge and jury, and sentencing. It also examines briefly the impact of the European Convention on Human Rights on English law.

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