Mistrust in justice system
- South Korean Legal experts trace the growing public resentment to what they say is a highly insular and hierarchical culture in the justice system.
- “Because judges aren’t elected and we don’t have a jury system, the public has no power of oversight,” said Kim Dae-in of the Good Law group. “The whole system is vulnerable to corruption and mistrust.” » The New York Times article – By Choe San-Hun – Published: March 12, 2012.
- Editor: Juries offer what judges lack, experience with living everyday life outside courtrooms.
- As a step in that direction all Thai court testimony should be digitally recorded. The digital recording should be a permanent part of the record and available to both the defendant and plaintiff or prosecutor.
- The current practice in which the judge interprets what witnesses have said then has a witness try to recall if the judge’s interpretation was correct allows judges to ignore or slant what they heard or thought they heard. This practice makes their rulings unfair and removes critical evidence that could be used on appeal.
- Thai law school students (and practicing lawyers and judges) should study jury selection in other countries, to avoid the common myth that Thai juries won’t work because they can be easily bought.
Jurors take an oath at the nation’s first trial by jury at Daegu District Court, Tuesday. The experiment to introduce the U.S.-style jury system is aimed to help modernize Korea’s judicial system. The reforms are being closely watched by Japan, which also plans to adopt a jury system. Article By Kim Rahn – Staff Reporter The Korea Times
The jury unanimously found the defendant guilty of the assault of a 70-year-old woman during an attempted burglary.
But in a passionate closing argument, the defence counsel urged leniency, saying the defendant had taken his victim to hospital and turned himself in, said Korean news agency Yonhap.
After a two-hour deliberation the jury recommended a suspended sentence of 30 months and 80 hours’ community service, and the judge agreed. Read this BBC Article »
More Background: This initial learning process has been facilitated by the South Korean government, which is running commercials about jury service and conducting mock trials. Read the IHT article » By Thaddeus Hoffmeister.
Related Lesson The New York Times – Learning Network - Exploring the (American) Youth Court System by Engaging in a Mock Trial
Overview: Students learn about youth courts and explore the system further by engaging in a mock youth court trial. Go to this Law and Society Lesson.
The Learning Foundation – “What to Teach” – Simplified Mock Trial Lesson Plan.