The moral principle in criminal proceedings

The moral principle in criminal proceedings is mainly manifested by the freedom of the evaluation of evidence. The legal norm on inner conviction in the Criminal Procedure Code of the Russian Federation contains the phrase of being governed by conscience. This concept is, on the one hand, more reflexive than «morals» and, on the other hand, contains a grain of something uninvestigated. In this second aspect it is most akin to the concept of «intuition» used by foreign authors who discuss this issue. «Ethics» and «freedom» are also adjacent concepts in this discussion. J. Bentham-s utilitarian philosophy could become the key semantic explanation of the contemporary model of evidence evaluation in the Russian Federation. The law should maximally provide for the truth-seeking. The absence of the right of the accused for the interrogation of witnesses summoned by him/her on the same conditions as the interrogation of witnesses for the prosecution in the Criminal Procedure Code of the Russian Federation does not allow the defense attorney to raise the issue of anti-evidence (i.e. an alibi) based on the witnesses- testimony: interim facts are used in the criminal proceedings only thanks to the evidence that proves or refutes them. It is necessary to establish a system of minimum general propositions of the logics of evidence in criminal cases manifested by the rules of symmetry of the subject of proof. It is not possible that the evidence proving the guilt of the accused should be of consequence, while the evidence of his/her innocence should be evaluated as inconsequential. The goal of the lawmaker is to eliminate the basis for the altruistic approach that requires the heroism of humanity from the judge in order to establish the truth in the criminal case. © 2017, Baikal National University of Economics and Law. All rights reserved.

Baikal National University of Economics and Law
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  • 1 The Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia, Moscow, Russian Federation
Court; Criminal case; Freedom of evaluation of evidence; Innocence; Presumption of innocence; The admissibility of evidence; The symmetry of the subject of proof
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