Codification of the Criminal Law

Topics: Law, Common law, Judge Pages: 2 (773 words) Published: April 30, 2011
The codification of the Criminal Code has marked a watershed on Australian legal jurisprudence. In this essay I will discuss the problems that may occur when interpreting the Criminal Code (The Code), the creation of uniformity and the also accessibility that the Code creates. The Criminal Code WA is a piece of legislation that has been passed by parliament the states that have enacted this legislation are referred to as Code jurisdictions, and the states that have not are known as Common Law jurisdictions. Since the development of the code it has impacted the code jurisdictions largely by making the Criminal Law more accessible to people due to the fact that it is readily available. In a journal by Matthew Goode he elaborated on the fact that the code was easy to locate: “Being easy to find means that a Criminal Code can be published as a paperback. The citizen can buy the book and read it..... Society expects all of its citizens to know the law.... How can we expect the citizen to know the law, let alone try to understand it, debate it, and contribute to its change or defence if it is scattered all over the statute book and hidden in hundreds of volumes of law reports, many of which are published thousands of miles away?” As a result of the code being easily accessible lawyers, judges and even law students can access any section of the code in order to determine what the elements of an offence are and also the possible penalty that can be ordered by a judge; This has ultimately impacted on the criminal law by creating a sense of uniformity within Code jurisdictions. Sir Samuel Griffith endeavoured to include all the rules of the unwritten Common Law which are relevant to the question of criminal responsibility, hence creating a further sense of uniformity in Code Jurisdictions. “ In Common Law jurisdictions when a judge is called on to deal with a new set of circumstances he is at liberty to decide according to his own view of justice and expediency; however...
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