This article claims that minor offense processes in the common law and the civil law, as examined through two prototypical exemplars of England and Vietnam, have been converging at a more rapid pace and in a reverse trend compared to the convergence in the mainstream, serious crime processes. Because of the notion of nonseriousness, a natural convergence between the two systems in minor offenses is more obvious and less challenging than the convergence in the process for serious crimes. It is commonplace that the goals of regulation, prevention, and efficiency have predominated over the ideal of adversarialism, even in an adversarial system like England’s. This natural convergence is accompanied by a due-process-evading justice, in which criminal fair trial rights could be disproportionately limited by ideas of triviality and the so-called noncriminal character. The article also suggests a convergence in the jurisprudential framework as minor offense justice reflects limitations on fair trial rights in dealing with less serious public wrongs.
The Expansion and Fragmentation of Minor Offense Justice: A Convergence Between the Common Law and the Civil Law
Dat T. Bui is a lecturer at Vietnam National University–Hanoi and a PhD candidate at Macquarie University. He was awarded Bachelor of Law and Master of Law at Vietnam National University–Hanoi in 2005 and 2009, respectively. In 2012, he won a PhD Australian Award to undertake research at Macquarie Law School, Macquarie University.
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Dat T. Bui; The Expansion and Fragmentation of Minor Offense Justice: A Convergence Between the Common Law and the Civil Law. New Criminal Law Review 1 August 2016; 19 (3): 382–411. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/nclr.2016.19.3.382
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