The Quest for Justice
What is justice? How does our legal system work? And how can we trust a system that is so changeable and widely criticised? These are some of the fundamental questions that former Supreme Court judge Ken Crispin sets out to answer in this enlightening and thought-provoking book. The law is one of the cornerstones of western democracy, and the judiciary one its most cherished institutions. From a heritage of feudalism and repression, our highly complex criminal justice system has evolved to encompass a respect for social values and the rights of individuals. Recently, however, it has become obvious that rights such as freedom of speech, freedom of association, and freedom from detention without trial are becoming increasingly endangered. The tough-on-crime rhetoric of police and politicians, the 'war on drugs', the 'reforms' designed to increase conviction rates, and the loss of rights due to fear of terrorism - all point to an erosion of justice in western societies.Ken Crispin's wealth of experience on both sides of the bar - from appearing for high-profile defendants such as Lindy and Michael Chamberlain to prosecuting murderers and rapists, and later sitting on the ACT Supreme Court bench - makes him the ideal guide for finding a way through these thorny legal thickets. Crispin lays bare the strengths and weaknesses of the legal system with great clarity and compassion. Compelling and easily comprehensible, but never simplistic, this is the definitive guide to justice as we know it.
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