Prevention is an important facet of criminalization, but one that must be subject to principled constraint if it is not to result in overextension of the criminal law. This article surveys the scope and forms of prevention within criminal law, analyzes its justifications and limits, and considers whether and when prevention might better be pursued through civil or regulatory procedures. In so doing, it seeks to clarify the place of prevention within criminal law and to develop restraining principles for criminalization whose purpose is predominantly preventive.
Prevention and Criminalization: Justifications and Limits
The authors are grateful to the AHRC for the award of a grant for a three-year study of Preventive Justice (Application ID: AH/H015655/1); to the participants in the Criminalization Conference at the University of Stirling (September 2011) and members of the Criminal Law Club, Faculty of Law, University of Toronto; and to Patrick Tomlin, Andreas von Hirsch, Rick Lippke, and Christopher Slobogin for their comments on a previous draft.
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Andrew Ashworth, Lucia Zedner; Prevention and Criminalization: Justifications and Limits. New Criminal Law Review 1 October 2012; 15 (4): 542–571. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/nclr.2012.15.4.542
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