Court Report

1879 Words May 23rd, 2013 8 Pages
LAWS1021: Court research report

The basic division in the structure of criminal courts is between the lower criminal courts – the local courts, Children’s court and Coroner’s court – and the higher criminal courts – the District Court and the Supreme Court. In observing proceedings at the Local, District and Supreme Courts over a period of three days a number of aspects of the criminal justice system were made apparent. The administration, processes and practices of the criminal trial are extremely varied dependent upon the level of criminal court being observed. The distinctions between the workings of the two courts revealed a number of the differences between summary proceedings and trial upon indictment. The cases observed served to
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Other cases that were observed through court visits further emphasised the nature of the judicial process in the Local Courts. The summary proceedings served in a number of cases to emphasise the triviality of the process. Cases involving minor offences such as traffic offences and petty theft were particularly trivial however other cases such as domestic violence and minor assault charges were not so inconsequential. They were of particular importance to the parties involved and it is thus important not to overgeneralise the process of the lower courts to being mere triviality. Whilst in the local courts there was an emphasis on speed and efficiency, this did not automatically mean that strict legality was disregarded. The importance placed on evidence and onus on the prosecutors in providing proof upheld important elements of the criminal justice system.

Higher criminal court – Ideology of Justice
On observing the District Court a number of distinctions from the Local Courts were immediately made apparent. Without going in to detail about the actual structure of the courts, they seemed to fit more closely with the traditional schema of a typical courtroom. In particular the larger courtrooms with more facilities combined with the barristers and magistrates wearing their wig and robes seemed to instantly uphold the ideology of justice. It is interesting to note how appearances can automatically provide an impression that justice will be upheld. The

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