• United Kingdom
• Saudi Arabia
• International Criminal Court
• Legal Pluralism: Where more than one legal system,
body of law, or court system exist in a jurisdiction.
• Distinguish: Legal hybrid, where a country does not have a single
dominant historical legal tradition.
• Court: Venue for the resolution of disputes
• Court of limited jurisdiction: Authority is over only specific segment
of disputes, separated by value, subject matter, or type of litigant.
• Court of general jurisdiction: Trial court with presumptive authority
over all other claims, usually the vast majority of them.
• Courts of first or intermediate appeal: Usually one level above trial
• Courts of last resort or final appeal: Second or last level of appeal.
• Adjudicators: Judges or magistrates who make
dispositions in court; may be professional or lay.
• Appointed in common law world and Latin America by executive,
legislative, or higher judicial officers (or increasingly by
• Elected in many United States states as a result of the
Progressive movement of the early 20th century.
• Career civil servants in most civil and Islamic law countries, in
which a judge self-selects his or her career path.
• The distinction among advocates (presentation in court),
advisors (legal advice and preparation of documents),
and scholars (legal research) is much more important
outside the U.S.
• Typical court system for UK and most former British
• Magistrate’s courts (low-level criminal cases)
• High or superior courts (courts of first instance for serious crimes,
and appeals of low-level crimes, called “Crown Courts” in UK)
• Court of Appeal and often Supreme Court (intermediate/final
• Legal Profession: Bifurcated
• Also bifurcated in South Africa, Ireland, 2 Australian states.
• Barristers: Courtroom advocates who can appear before judges.
• Professional association is called a Bar Association
• Apprenticeship called “pupilage” and includes ancient Inns of
• Solicitors: Attorneys who provide legal advice
• Formerly appointed by Lord Chancellor; today appointed by
Judicial Appointments Commission (same is true in many former
British colonies) in an effort to broaden the demographics of the
• No legislative confirmation or vetting by bar association
• Unlike U.S., separation of law enforcement and prosecution is a
recent development; until 1980s, police served as prosecutors and
hired their own barristers to argue in court
• 1985: Parliament created the position of “Crown prosecutor” (like
U.S. attorney) to enhance quality of prosecutions
• Crown Prosecution Service is headed by Director of Public
• Court system of France (and typical of former French
• Minor crimes go to:
• Police courts (tribunaux de police): misdemeanors
• Correctional courts (tribunaux correctionnels): serious
• Felony cases go to courts of assize (cour d’assise)
• Appeals to Courts of Appeal and then to Court of Cassation.
• Judiciary and Procurators
• Requires law degree and attendance at National School for the
Judiciary in Bordeaux. Following course of study one becomes
judge or procurator.
• Rarely possess experience as practitioners, and render abstract
and brief rulings.
• Lawyers: Avocats must possess a license in law from a
university law school, followed by examination.
• Certified law graduates serve a three year apprenticeship
• National Bar Council founded in 1992 to regulate profession
• Legal profession is recently fused: all lawyers known as “avocats”
and can appear in court, give legal advice, and prepare legal
• Legal Education
• Undergraduate curriculum is generally liberal arts with a legal
• Must enter a one-year professional law course following
graduation. Includes internships and is followed by
• Court system
• Minor criminal cases: Amtsgerichte
• Major criminal cases (and appeal of minor ones): Landgerichte
• Appeals to Oberlandsgerichte (intermediate appeals court) and
then to Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerictshof).
• Remember: Germany well-known for its many specialized courts
and for Federal Constitutional Court which hears pure legal
• Verdicts at trial by majority vote of panel of professional
judges and lay judges.
• Like France, legal education is undergraduate, so focus
is not practical. Apprenticeship and examination
• No legal profession during Cultural Revolution;
reestablished in 1982. Increasing professionalization and
• Continues to be a shortage of legally-trained judges, but new
judges today need a bachelor’s degree
• Judicial selection for court presidents is carried out through
election by peoples’ congresses; other judges appointed by court
• High rate of corruption
• Three years of college education, bar exam, 1 year apprenticeship
• People’s assessors: Citizens selected as lay judges (“mass line”)
• Legal Education
• Large number of universities and practical institutes
• All legal professionals are trained in law, receive a law
degree, pass a national bar exam, and continue 18
months of study at the Legal Training and Research
• Legal profession small for an industrialized country
• Moving toward American-style graduate legal education;
today, need bachelor’s degree to enter law school
• Judges and Procurators
• Bureaucratic, like France: Select judge or procurator career track
during school; judicial candidates selected by the court.
• Same training as judges and procurators. Stigma toward lawyers.
• Saiban-in: Lay assessors in judicial decisionmaking (like
• Traditional Islamic judge, served at pleasure of political authority
• Decisions were in personal judgment; no court hierarchy
• Schooled in Islamic law and consulted Islamic scholars during
• Court system of Saudi Arabia
• Islamic courts: First-degree trial courts, courts of appeal, High
• Secular courts: Board of Grievances (recently renamed
Administrative Court), Supreme Judicial Council
• Modern judges
• Must hold degree from one of the Sharia colleges or universities in
the Kingdom. Depend solely on own reasoning, not precedent.
Tend to be conservative, since all are religiously-trained men.
• Permanent international tribunal created in 2002
• Prosecutes four crimes
• Genocide (systemic destruction of a group)
• Crimes against humanity (government policy or toleration of
widespread or systemic attacks on human dignity)
• War crimes (violations of the laws of armed conflict)
• Aggression (unlawful use of military force)
• Court can get cases in one of three ways
• State party can refer a case (Uganda, DR Congo, Central African
• UN Security Council may refer a case (Darfur/Sudan, Libya)
• Prosecutor can initiate investigation (Cote d’Ivoire, Kenya)
• Three component parts
• Judicial Division (adjudication of cases)
• Pre-trial chamber
• Trial chamber
• Appeals chamber
• Office of the Prosecutor
• Fatou Bensouda of Senegal
• Administrative aspects of criminal prosecution: legal aid,
victim protection, etc.