The Origins of Adversary Criminal Trial / Edition 1

The Origins of Adversary Criminal Trial / Edition 1

by John H. Langbein
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0199287236

ISBN-13: 9780199287239

Pub. Date: 09/01/2005

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

The adversary system of trial, the defining feature of the Anglo-American legal procedure, developed late in English legal history. For centuries defendants were forbidden to have legal counsel, and lawyers seldom appeared for the prosecution either. Trial was meant to be an occasion for the defendant to answer the charges in person.

The transformation from

Overview

The adversary system of trial, the defining feature of the Anglo-American legal procedure, developed late in English legal history. For centuries defendants were forbidden to have legal counsel, and lawyers seldom appeared for the prosecution either. Trial was meant to be an occasion for the defendant to answer the charges in person.

The transformation from lawyer-free to lawyer-dominated criminal trial happened within the space of about a century, from the 1690's to the 1780's. This book explains how the lawyers captured the trial. In addition to conventional legal sources, Professor Langbein draws upon a rich vein of contemporary pamphlet accounts about trials in London's Old Bailey. The book also mines these novel sources to provide the first detailed account of the formation of the law of criminal evidence.

Responding to menacing prosecutorial initiatives (including reward-seeking thief takers and crown witnesses induced to testify in order to save their own necks) the judges of the 1730's decided to allow the defendant to have counsel to cross-examine accusing witnesses. By restricting counsel to the work of examining and cross-examining witnesses, the judges intended that the accused would still need to respond in person to the charges against him. Professor Langbein shows how counsel manipulated the dynamics of adversary procedure to defeat the judges design, ultimately silencing the accused and transforming the very purpose of the criminal trial. Trial ceased to be an opportunity for the accused to speak, and instead became an occasion for defense counsel to test the prosecution case.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780199287239
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
09/01/2005
Series:
Oxford Studies in Modern Legal History Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
360
Product dimensions:
9.10(w) x 6.10(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

Introduction
1. The Lawyer-Free Criminal Trial
The Altercation
The Rapidity of Trial
The Rule Against Defence Counsel
The Marian Pretrial
The 'Accused Speaks' Trial
The Plight of the Accused
2. The Treason Trials Act of 1696: The Advent of Defense Counsel
The Treason Trials of the Later Stuarts
The Critque of the Trials
The Provisions of the Act
The Restriction to Treason
Of Aristocrats and Paupers: Treason's Legacy for Adversary Criminal Justice
3. The Prosecutorial Origins of Defence Counsel
Prosecution Lawyers
Prosecution Perjury
Making Forgery Felony
Evening Up: Defense Counsel Enters the Felony Trial
4. The Law of Criminal Evidence
The View From the Sessions Papers
The Character Rule
The Corroboration Rule
The Confession Rule
Unfinished Business: The Hearsay Rule
Groping for the Lever: Excluding Evidence
5. From Altercation to Adversary Trial
Latency
Silencing the Accused
Prosecution Counsel
Defense Counsel
Judicial Acquiescence
Jury Trial
The Truth Deficit

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