Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice

2014 Edition
| Editors: Gerben Bruinsma, David Weisburd

Victims’ Rights in the Criminal Justice System

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-5690-2_325

Overview

The concept of victims’ rights has come to bear considerable influence on the formation of criminal justice policy on both the domestic and international platforms. While commentators have long accepted the desirability of rights for accused persons, it is only in more recent times that a discourse concerning the rights of victims has emerged. Prior to exploring the evolution and extent of such rights, it is worth noting at the outset that the tendency of policymakers and politicians to adopt language couched in the terminology of victims rights’ often departs from the notion of a legal right, in the sense that it can be enforced through the justice system. In other words, while certain benefits or dispensations may be framed as rights on paper, they frequently lack any enforcement mechanism and may not be considered binding on courts or other public authorities.

History and Development

There are diverse and varied accounts which document the ascendancy of victims’ rights...

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Recommended Reading and References

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Durham Law SchoolDurham UniversityDurhamUK