The United States and Australian laws of criminal procedure show many common features which originate from their common English origin. These include the presumption of innocence, the neutral role of the trial judge, and the use of the jury trial. However, between the jurisdictions there are also significant different approaches especially in relation to the treatment of illegally obtained evidence, improperly obtained confessions and entrapment. The transparency of the jury is also an important distinguishing feature of the United States' system not evident in Australia.
Introduction Australia and the United States of America share a common heritage, close ties to their mother country of England, the same language, and a…show more content…
Australian courts have also stopped short of adopting the “fruit of the poisoned tree” doctrine applied by their U.S. counterparts. There has to be a direct relationship between the illegal or improper conduct and the evidence adduced to justify its exclusion from the court. However, there is some overlap between fruit of the poisoned tree doctrine and the discretion to exclude confessional evidence for unfairness, especially where the search and seizure was accompanied by an unlawful arrest.
Thus although Australian courts tend to strictly read statutory provisions enabling search and seizure, they often fail to exclude evidence from criminal trial that breaches the scope of those provisions. This reflects a realistic view that police investigation should not be overly observed if it produces appropriate outcomes. In Australia, the need to maintain law and order is given priority over individual rights to privacy.
The bases for the criminal procedure process in the United States are, in some ways, quite similar to those in Australia. As in Australia, the U.S. criminal justice system also is overwhelmingly state oriented, with relatively few crimes prosecuted in the federal courts. Those cases that are