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Criminal Law

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HomeBrud.gifCriminal Law

Criminal Law is the Law related to Crime. Hence, it is also called the Law of Crimes. Other terms related to Criminal Law are Criminology - the systematic study of criminals and Penology - the study of punishments in relation to the crime and the management of prisons.

Criminal Law is concerned with wrongs committed against the public as a whole.

  • Criminal acts are generally well defined and are prohibited by the local, state or federal governments through various statutes.
  • The general rule of thumb is that a person should be punished for only the offence he/she has committed and not for the offence committed by others. Hence it is said that Vicarious Liability is unknown to Criminal Law. However, there are exceptions.
  • It deals with Corrective justice, Police and Prison system. Takes close examination of Criminal Procedures in Warrant Cases and Summons Cases
  • Classification, Hierarchy and Organization of Criminal Courts
  • Various stages if Pre-trial process (Arrest, Arrest with/with-out warrant), absconder status, rights of accused person, Complaint vs FIR
  • Trial process
  • Judgement, appeal, reference, review, revision, execution etc.
  • Bail, Anticipatory Bail, Bailable and non-bailable offenses
  • Fair Trial, Juvenile Justice, Punishments etc.
  • Probation
  • Suspended Sentence, the power of suspending sentence
  • Police, Courts and Prison are functionaries in the criminal justice system.
  • Certain public officials, such as the District Attorney (DA), on behalf of the state, are allowed to prosecute criminal defendants, not by their victims or other private parties.

Need for Criminal Law

  • Provides a framework for punishing the wrongdoer
  • Provisions for the State to punish so that social order is not disturbed
  • Deter others from making a crime

Criminal Law in India

The Criminal Law of India is divided into two categories.

  1. Substantive Law
  2. Procedural Law

Substantive Law provides for the definitions of various offences and prescribes punishments for the respective offences. The Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC) falls under the Substantive Law.

Procedural Law provides a mechanism for the enforcement of the Criminal Law. The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 comes under this category.

Criminal Law in United Kingdom

The Magistrate Court and the Crown Court handle criminal cases in England.

Acts & Rules related to Crime

  • Probation of Offenders Act, 1958
  • Repatriation of Prisoners (Amendment) Act, 2011
  • Indian Penal Code (Amendment) Bill, 2010 (117 of 2010)
  • Prevention of Begging Bill, 2010
  • Victims of Naxalite Act of Violence (Relief and Rehabilitation) Bill, 2010
  • Treatment of Attempt to Suicide as a Non-Punishable Offence Bill, 2010
  • Delhi Prevention of Touting and Malpractices against Tourists Act, 2010
  • Delhi Criminal Courts (Payment of Expenses to Complainant and Witnesses) Rules, 2010
  • Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Bill, 2010
  • Identification of Prisoners (Tamil Nadu Amendment) Act, 2010
  • Code of Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Act, 2010
  • Uttar Pradesh Petty Offences (Trial by Special Judicial Magistrates) (Second Amendment) Rules, 2010
  • Energy Conservation (Manner of holding inquiry) Amendment Rules, 2010
  • Naxalite Affected Areas (Special Provisions) Bill, 2009
  • Acid (Control) Bill, 2009
  • Prevention of Trafficking and Abuse of Children Bill, 2009
  • Prevention of Sexual Harassment of Women Employees, Girl Students, Inmates of Women Protection Homes, Housewives and Girls Bill, 2009
  • Abolition of Death Penalty to Women, Children and Indigent Persons Bill, 2009
  • Indian Penal Code (Amendment) Bill, 2009 (15 of 2009)
  • Indian Penal Code (Amendment) Bill, 2009 (32 of 2009)
  • Determination of Price of the Forfeited Property (Amendment) Rules, 2009
  • Explosives (Amendment) Rules, 2009
  • Prohibition of Smoking in Public Places (Amendment) Rules, 2009
  • West Bengal Medicare Service Persons and Medicare Service Institutions (Prevention of Violence and Damage to Property) Act, 2009
  • Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (National Fund for Control of Drug Abuse) Amendment Rules, 2009 (G.S.R. 581(E) of 2009)
  • Incest Offences Bill, 2009

United Kingdom

South Africa

  • Criminal Procedure Act, 1977
  • Prevention of Organised Crime Act, 1998
  • Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Amendment Act, 2010
  • Domestic Violence Act, 1998
  • Protection from Harassment Act, 2010





  • Australian Criminal Code Act 1995
  • Northern Territory Criminal Code Act 1983
  • Queensland Criminal Code Act 1899
  • Tasmania Criminal Code Act 1924
  • Western Australia Criminal Code Act Compilation Act 1913

Australian Capital Territory

  • Australian Crime Commission (ACT) Act 2003
  • ACT Bail Act 1992
  • ACT Crime Prevention Powers Act 1998
  • ACT Crimes (Assumed Identities) Act 2009
  • ACT Crimes (Child Sex Offenders) Act 2005
  • ACT Crimes (Controlled Operations) Act 2008
  • ACT Crimes (Forensic Procedures) Act 2000
  • ACT Crimes (Protection of Witness Identity) Act 2011
  • ACT Crimes (Restorative Justice) Act 2004
  • ACT Crimes (Sentence Administration) Act 2005
  • ACT Crimes (Sentencing) Act 2005
  • ACT Crimes (Surveillance Devices) Act 2010
  • ACT Crimes Act 1900
  • ACT Criminal and Civil Justice Act 1351 25 edw 3 st 5 c 4
  • ACT Criminal Code 2002



  • Criminal Code Act, Chapter 77
  • Criminal Justice (Miscellaneous Provisions)
  • Criminal Justice (Release from Custody) (Special Provisions) Act
  • Procedure (Northern States) Act
  • Procedure Act


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