Билеты по английскому для юристов
Criminal courts. Magistrates' Courts. Every person charged, with an offence is summoned to appear before a local Magistrates' Court, which may impose a fine up to a general limit of 2,000 pounds or six months' imprisonment. With 98 per cent of cases the magistrates on the bench decide on guilty or innocence, and if necessary, what penalty to impose. With more serious cases the magistrates can decide only to send them for trial in a Crown Court, where the decision on guilt or innocence will be made by a jury of twelve citizens chosen by chance, and if necessary, the penalty will be decided by the presiding judge, helped by two Justices of the Peace (JPs). A person accused before a Magistrates' Court may demand to be sent for trial before a Crown Court, even if the case is not serious. A Magistrates' Court normally consists of three JPs. The JPs are ordinary but worthy citizens have been appointed to their positions by the Lord Chancellor on the advice of local appointing committees. JPs receive no payment for their work. In the courts the JPs are advised on points of law by their clerks, who are professional lawyers; otherwise they decide each case according to their sense what is fair and reasonable. Crown Courts. When a criminal case is not dealt with finally in a Magistrates' Court, it goes for trial in a Crown Court. The court is presided over by a judge, but the decision on guilt or innocence is made by a jury of twelve citizens. The judge's functions are, first, to see that the trial is properly conducted; second, to give guidance to the jury before asking it for its verdict and finally, if the jury finds the accused guilty, to decide upon the penalty and pronounce a sentence. For this last decision the judge is helped by two JPs who have been sitting beside him throughout the proceedings. Judges are either practicing or former barristers who all are qualified, professional and experienced lawyers and are paid for their work. Twelve local citizens serve as members of the jury. A person accused cannot be found to be guilty except by the verdict of at least ten of the twelve members of the jury. Normally the jury do agree, though sometimes only after some hours of discussion. If the jury finds the accused guilty, then it is for the judge to pronounce a sentence. The accused may appeal to the Court of Appeal against conviction or sentence. The Court of Appeal does not hear witnesses other than in exceptional circumstances. The Crown Courts act also as the appeal courts against both conviction and sentences by magistrates. When the appeal is against conviction, a judge re-hears all the evidence that witnesses have already given in the lower court, but there is no jury.