Lay Participation: the Paradox of the Jury
Comparative Legal History
Taylor and Francis
This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from Taylor & Francis via the DOI in this record.
Reason for embargo
Lay participation in the form of the jury has been integral to the administration of justice in England at all levels and in both civil and criminal arenas since the Middle Ages and is popularly regarded as a legacy of Magna Carta by dint of the constitutional significance attributed to the Great Charter over the centuries. Arguably juries provide a bastion against the potential harshness of the state and a buffer against arbitrariness on the part of the judge as well as injecting an element of amateurism to combat the increased professionalism of the legal system. Yet, for all the perceived benefits, serious inadequacies in jurors and even in the apparent fairness of the system have been exposed. Jury decisions, too, have come under scrutiny. This paper examines the paradox of the jury in criminal trials and compares their role in the modern legal system with the historical past.
Comparative Legal History, 2015, Volume 3, Issue 2