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Title: The case for abolishing jury trials in the English legal system : an analysis of the issues and consequences
Author: Yoshida, Narutoshi
ISNI:       0000 0004 5368 2885
Awarding Body: King's College London
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis gives a critical study of the fairness and efficiency of the jury trial in the contemporary English justice system. It analyses the various pressures on the English criminal jury system, and attempts to justify attempts to justify the possible possible abolition of the criminal jury trials in England and Wales, hereafter referred to as ‘England’ for the sake of convenience. Firstly, it considers the origin, functions and theoretical basis of the existing English jury system, including the widespread perception of it being a constitutional mechanism designed to involve citizens in the delivery of justice and the implementation of criminal law. It considers the steady reduction in the number of jury trials in recent decades and the introduction of judge-only trials. Comparisons between jury trials in the Crown Courts and summary trials in magistrates' courts are drawn, highlighting the advantages and disadvantages of each, referring to empirical and sociological data. Secondly, it underlines weakness in the jury process stems from stems from obstacles to fair trials, particularly: jury tampering, confusion in complex fraud cases and incidences of contempt of court committed by jurors resulting from their use of the Internet and social media; and draws on selected legal cases, the perceived quality of jury decision-making, the avoidance of institutional prejudice, and issues surrounding public confidence. Finally, it will present a number of recommendations for English jury reform, including the new Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015, and explores the possibility of the abolition of the English criminal jury system and proposes the use of alternative models of criminal trial.
Supervisor: Blackburn, Robert W. ; Plant, Raymond Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available