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Law Of Crime

The body of law which relates to crime is called Criminal law. The wrongful actions which are included in criminal law are threatening, harmful, or otherwise endangering to the property, health, safety, and moral welfare of people. Those people who violate this law are punished or sent for rehabilitation.[1]

In criminal law, the charges for offenders involve the government punishing an individual for an act or an omission. There are three major acts in which Indian criminal law was divided i.e., Indian Penal Code,1860, Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, and Indian Evidence Act, 1872.

Any act or omission which involves in violation of a law prohibiting the action or omission is called a Crime.[2]

Types Of Criminal Law:

  1. Indian Penal code:

    The Indian penal code is created to set down what is right and what is wrong in society and to enforce penalties who are committing those wrongs or errors. The 'will' of committing a crime under criminal law plays an important role in determining the offense's liability. In 1860 The Indian Penal Code was introduced in different parts of Indian territory.

    It follows the theory of English Common Law that was changed from time to time but the Indian Penal Code follows the country's general code of criminal law, this is the distinctive characteristic of the India Penal Code. Various section of the Indian Penal Code covers different crimes such as murder, abduction, rape, robbery, stealing, etc. and punished under those sections. There are 576 sections.[3]
  2. Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC):

    The code of criminal procedure was formed in 1973 and is applicable from 1 April 1974. It is the main legislation for the administration of substantive criminal law in India. CrPC signifies that Penal Law is meant to protect society and CrPC is a key method for achieving and implementing the significance of Law. to isolate the judiciary from the execution is the main purpose of CrPC.

    CrPC provides various machinery for crime investigation, collecting evidence, determination of guilt or innocence of the accused, and punishment of guilty. It deals with maintenance of wife, children, and parents, public nuisance, and prevention of offense. There are 484 sections, 2 schedules, and 56 forms in the act.[4]
  3. Indian Evidence Act:

    The act was passed by the Imperial Legislative Council on 1 September 1872 at the time of the British Raj. The act contains a set of rules, regulations, and allied issues governing the suitability of the evidence in the Indian court of law. Adoption of the Indian Evidence Act was a judicial measure introduced in India. The Indian evidence act contains 11 chapters and 167 sections. The Indian Evidence Act introduced a standard set of laws that is applicable for Indians.[5]

The objective of criminal law

Criminal law was formed to identify, acknowledge, punish and educate the offenders of Law regarding the consequences of their actions through the criminal justice system.

The five-key purpose of criminal law is as follows:

  1. Retribution:
    The main aim of retribution is to punish the criminal in some way he commits a crime. Justice is provided in the same sense the crime is taken place. "Rightening the balance" is the theory that is related to Retribution.
  2. Deterrence:
    It is the theory of criminal law with well-defined punishment that discourages individual to repeat offense and discourage other in society from attempting a similar type of crime or activity out of fear of punishment.[6]
  3. Incapacitation:
    It is simply keeping away the criminals from society so that the public is protected from their misconduct. This is achieved through a prison sentence and the death penalty or banishment has the same purpose.[7]
  4. Rehabilitation:
    This is a type of punishment is to treat and train the offenders so that they can return to society and functioning as law-abiding members of the community.[8]
  5. Restoration:
    it is an approach to repair harm which is caused by offenders by providing an opportunity for those harmed and those who take responsibility for the harm.[9]

Elements of crime

There are two main elements of crime which are as follows:

  1. Actus Reus:
    It is the physical element of crime i.e.; it is made up of all the parts of crime except the mental state of the defendants. Actus Reus is something that was done by the defendant but sometimes there is an omission that causes Actus Reus. Most of the crimes related to Actus Reus were harm or loss to a person or a group, damage to property.
  2. Mens Rea:
    It means an intention to do a forbidden act. Mens Rea is defined as a mental element with intent or knowledge that the conduct may result in death. Under Mens Rea the accused know that he was doing wrong intentionally, knowingly, negligently.

Selected Criminal Laws

There are different types of crime and the criminal punishment varies with jurisdiction. Some typical aspects of criminal laws are as follows:
  1. Fatal Offence:
    Killing someone means Murder is an unlawful act that comes under fatal offense. There is no exact definition of crime but it depends on the jurisdiction, the consequences of murder. Punishment under Fatal Crime includes Life Imprisonment, Death Penalty, Fines, and other Punishment and penalties. The punishment is based on the seriousness of the crime.[10]
  2. Personal Crime:
    These are the crimes committed by an offender against another person, state, damaging another property, assault, rape, sexual assault, and many more. In this crime, the victim is directly harmed, whether mentally, physically, or emotionally by the offenders. Most of the time personal crimes are associated with violence against victims.[11]
  3. Property Offence:
    Property crime generally involves private property. These crimes are taken place to obtain the money, property of another person. Offenders generally use force or threat to extract money from the victims. Property offenses are generally divided into two groups: destroyed property and stolen property.[12]
  4. Participatory Offence:
    The person who commits the crime is not the only offender. The person who helps or participates in the offense is also the criminal if there is some evidence of involvement of that person. Participatory Offence is also a serious crime that results in punishment.[13]

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