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Article

Access_open On Presuming Innocence

Is Duff’s Civic Trust Principle in Line with Current Law, Particularly the European Convention on Human Rights?

Journal Netherlands Journal of Legal Philosophy, Issue 3 2013
Keywords Presumption of innocence, Art. 6(2) ECHR, Duff’s civic trust
Authors Geert Knigge
AbstractAuthor's information

    Duff sets out to present, not theoretical concepts, but ‘real’ principles that underlie positive law. This paper examines whether Duff’s analysis really reflects current law. To that end, this paper analyses the case law of the European Court on Human Rights. As far as his preposition that there are many presumptions of innocence is concerned, Duff seems to be right. In the case law of the European Court different presumptions can be discerned, with different rationales. However, these presumptions are a far cry from the trust principle Duff advocates. Indeed, a principle that prescribes trust cannot be found in the Court’s case law. There might be a unifying principle but if so this principle is about respect for human dignity rather than trust. This analysis serves as a basis for criticism. It is argued that the approach Duff proposes is in tension with the Court’s case law in several respects.


Geert Knigge
Geert Knigge is Advocate General of the Supreme Court of the Netherlands and Professor of Criminal Law at the University of Groningen.
Discussion

Access_open The Co-originality of Law and Democracy in the Moral Horizon of Modernity

Journal Netherlands Journal of Legal Philosophy, Issue 3 2010
Keywords co-originality, deliberative democracy, Habermas, Lefort, modernity
Authors Stefan Rummens
AbstractAuthor's information

    This paper argues that Neil Walker’s analysis of the complementary relationship between democracy and constitutionalism remains one-sided. It focuses only on the incompleteness of democracy and the democracy-realizing function of constitutionalism rather than also taking into account the reverse complementary and constitution-realizing function of democracy. In this paper, I defend a fuller account that takes into account this mutual complementarity between democracy and constitutionalism. Such an alternative approach is consequential for Walker’s argument in two respects. In terms of the general analysis of the relationship between democracy and constitutionalism, my adjusted approach leads to a defence of the Habermasian thesis of the co-originality of constitutionalism and democracy which is too quickly dismissed by Walker himself. A fuller appreciation of this co-originality suggests that the relationship between constitutionalism and democracy is perhaps, after all, more singularly complementary (as opposed to being both complementary and oppositional) than Walker recognizes. In terms of the more specific analysis of the impact of globalization, this adjusted approach tilts the argument in favour of the critics of current practices of postnational constitutionalism. Without complementary postnational democratic structures, this constitutionalism remains problematic and potentially oppressive.


Stefan Rummens
Stefan Rummens is Assistant Professor of Political Theory at the Institute for Management Research of the Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
Article

Access_open ‘Wat is waarheid?’ De rol van deskundigen bij waarheidsvinding in de strafrechtspraak

Journal Netherlands Journal of Legal Philosophy, Issue 1 2010
Keywords Legitimation durch Verfahren, criminal law, expert-witnesses, truth, reliability of evidence
Authors Anne Ruth Mackor
AbstractAuthor's information

    Huls has argued that the idea that judges are truth-finders is misleading. In the first part of the paper I put his claim to the test. Against Huls I argue that the aim of procedures in criminal lawsuits is not only to guarantee binding decisions but also to help to find the truth. In the second part of the paper I investigate the role expert-witnesses play in truth-finding. Cleiren and Loth have argued that experts fail to understand the differences between legal and scientific ways of truth-finding. It turns out that Cleiren does not offer an argument for her claim and that Loth’s claim fails too, since it confuses coherence as truth and coherence as epistemic justification. I conclude that legal scholars, rather than experts, fail to understand the nature of legal and scientific truth-finding.


Anne Ruth Mackor
Anne Ruth Mackor is professor of professional ethics, in particular of the legal professions, at the Faculty of Law of Groningen, and Socrates professor of professional ethics at the Faculties of Philosophy and Theology of Groningen.
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