Managing Criminal Justice

  • Sian Elias


In a dissenting judgment in 1983, Sir Duncan McMullin said of the criminal law that “[i]t is not important that [it] should be innovative; it is important that it be certain and seen as fair in its application by citizens whose lives it affects”. Well, that was a simpler time perhaps. In the past decade there has been a great deal of innovation in criminal justice. Some of it has been judge-nudged. Most has been enacted by Parliament. In my remarks today I want to raise questions about whether the changes have assisted with the certainty and fairness of criminal justice. I do not attempt answers.