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Soviet principle of objective truth as the example of inquisitorial system

A Soviet court was tasked by the law to establish the objective truth. Accordingly, both the court and the prosecutor played an active role in the process. Their active role in the process was apparent in the following:

ü The court of first instance was not limited to hearing the evidence presented by the parties, but rather was obliged to take all legally provided measures to establish the actual circumstances of the case, including collecting evidence on its own initiative.

ü In the course of ensuring the legality and adequacy of the decisions of the court of first instance, an appellate court was obliged to examine these cases in full, regardless of the arguments set out in the appeal.

ü If a court hearing a case discovered that one of the parties involved, officials or other persons may have committed a crime, it was entitled to initiate criminal proceedings.

ü At any stage of proceeding, the prosecutor was obliged to take legal measures in response to any violations of law, regardless of the nature of these violations.

ü At any stage of proceeding, a prosecutor was obliged to bring a protest against an unlawful or unfair decision of the court, irrespective of whether he was involved in the process or not.

Some essential inquisitorial elements of Soviet system are preserved in civil and criminal proceedings in Russia, Belarus and the Central Asia where strong Soviet traditions still exist nowadays.

In many post-Soviet states (including Ukraine) procedural law underwent a fundamental change; the principles of court procedure were transformed. Courts were deprived of their active role and became a kind of referee in the dispute between the parties. The courtsí mission has become more modest, and now it consists in establishing the result of the partiesí dispute through court proceedings.


Date: 2015-01-02; view: 794

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