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Chapter

Cover Smith, Hogan and Ormerod's Essentials of Criminal Law

1. Introduction  

David Ormerod and John Child

This book focuses on substantive criminal law, that is, how offences such as theft and murder are defined. This introductory chapter sets in context criminal offences and defences, first by considering the basis upon which certain conduct is criminalised and other conduct is not. In continuing to set the context, the chapter goes on to consider criminal justice and criminology, criminal evidence, criminal process (including the court structure and central actors), sentencing, civil law protections, and so on. Narrowing to our focus on substantive criminal law—how offences and defences are defined—the chapter moves on to discuss the sources of criminal law, the internal structure of offences and defences, principles of the substantive criminal law, and the subjects to which it applies. Finally, the chapter introduces features on reform and legal application.

Chapter

Cover Smith, Hogan, and Ormerod's Essentials of Criminal Law

1. Introduction  

This book focuses on substantive criminal law, that is, how offences such as theft and murder are defined. This introductory chapter sets in context criminal offences and defences, first by considering the basis upon which certain conduct is criminalised and other conduct is not. In continuing to set the context, the chapter goes on to consider criminal justice and criminology; criminal evidence; criminal process (including the court structure and central actors); sentencing; civil law protections; and so on. Narrowing to our focus on substantive criminal law—how offences and defences are defined—the chapter moves on to discuss the sources of criminal law; the internal structure of offences and defences; principles of the substantive criminal law; and the subjects to which it applies. Finally, the chapter introduces features on reform and legal application.