Police Powers

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Legal Studies
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Outline some of the power police have to conduct an investigation. How does the current system balance the need for justice with the rights of citizens? The law defines what a crime is and whether a particular act constitutes an offence. The responsibility for enforcing criminal laws and ensuring they are adhered to lies with the police. The police are a part of an executive arm of government and so are separate from the legislature who makes the laws and the courts that make enforceable legal decisions and judgements. The responsibility that police have is the prevention and detection of crime and the maintenance of public order, but most importantly it is the police that are responsible for ensuring the criminal laws are observed. The role the police have in the criminal investigation process is to investigate crimes, make arrests if necessary, interrogate suspects and gather evidence against the accused. Once all evidence is collected police will then present the evidence for judgement to the court on behalf of the state, either directly or through a prosecutor. An example a newspaper article titled “tougher terror laws” gives us an example of police having power to enter a home without a warrant and re-entered after twelve hours during an emergency under new anti-terror laws. Labour and the collation voted together in the senate last night to pass the legislation, this then create a joint parliamentary committee to monitor the AFP (Australian Federal Police) and the Australian Crime Commission. After a seven day detention limit for someone arrested on suspicion of terrorism the legislation was disregarded. This is an example police not using a warrant to enter a home. The article was specifically about terrorism and creating new legislation for anti-terror laws; in this case the legislation did no pass and was disregarded. Since this case there has been much legislation that has passed for instants The Anti-Discrimination Act 2004...
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