Double Jeopardy Protection : A Comparative Overview
It is a fundamental principle of the common law that a person cannot be put in jeopardy twice for the same offence. Almost all common law countries incorporate this protection in their laws. While some countries have found it necessary to be included in their constitutions, others have incorporated it in their statutes. All agree that the protection has its origin in the English common law of the eighteenth century. Though its origin is thus common, it is found that its reception and implementation have been different. The purpose for which the protection has been accepted, the problems arising out of the implementation of these purposes and the resolution of these problems etc., are dealt with differently. These differences have been subjected to a study in this work. Because of the differences the projection presents in England, America, Canada and India, these regimes have been selected for the study. Both in America and India, the protection against double jeopardy is accepted as a constitutional right and incorporated in the constitutions. It is embodied in the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in the form ?nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb?. The Indian Constitution also in Art. 2) (2) provides: ?No person shall be prosecuted and punished for the same offence more than once?. On the contrary, in England and Canada, it is part of the common law as well as of statute law. The doctrine receives restrictive interpretation in England, Canada and India in the common law tradition, but it receives very liberal interpretation in the U.S. Supreme Court the pronouncements of which have created an array of safeguards to the accused. The enforcement of Double Jeopardy Protection in these four regimes has thus been exhaustively examined in the five chapters of this book. It will be of great help to judges lawyers, teachers and students who are interested in comparative law.
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