The role of the accused in English and Islamic criminal justice
This thesis is a comparative study of the role of the accused in the systems of English and Islamic criminal justice. It seeks to explore the underlying relationship between the individual and the state through an historical, structural and contextual analysis of their rules relating to questioning and of confessions. The analysis of the English system covers the period 1800 to 1984, with particular reference to developments during the nineteenth century when the foundations for the modern English state were established. The analysis of the Islamic system combines traditionally Islamic and modern methods, assessing the "Islamisation" movement in Malaysia through a religico-structural understanding of juristic opinion from the four main schools of Sunnite jurisprudence. The thesis contributes to existing knowledge on a number of levels: first, it questions and revises the "myth" of "progress" that has dominated observations of the history of the English criminal justice system; second, it elucidates the relationship between Islamic law in theory and the law that is applied and proposed in its name in Muslim states; third, it provides an analytical framework for drawing comparisons between the underlying values of the systems of English and Islamic criminal justice. While acknowledging fundamental differences in terms of outlook and articulation, the author concludes there are important similarities expressed through such notions as "suspect" in the English system and "kafir"I"fasiq" in the Islamic. These act as intermediate constitutional categories to whom the state owe less protection. But the author notes also that these similarities are not observed necessarily in the "law" which is implemented or proposed in Muslim states; exact correspondence depends upon the over-arching political structure and the institution of Caliphate. The thesis is divided into six chapters: chapter one sets out the conventional view of the historical development of English criminal procedure and evidence; chapter two subjects that to a critique and chapter three offers a revised thesis. Chapter four, explores methods for interpreting and explaining Islam; chapter five sets out rules relating to confessions and questioning according to the four Sunni schools; chapter six puts them into "context" through an examination of the "Islamisation" process in Malaysia.