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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 68603 Find in a Library
Title: CORRECTIONS LAW DEVELOPMENTS - BARRING THE CONVICT FROM THE PROCEEDS OF HIS STORY
Journal: CRIMINAL LAW BULLETIN  Volume:16  Issue:3  Dated:(MAY/JUNE 1980)  Pages:279-287
Author(s): S CHRISTIANSON
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 9
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THIS ARTICLE SUGGESTS THAT LAWS DESIGNED TO BE PART OF A SCHEME FOR COMPENSATING VICTIMS OF CRIME BY PREVENTING THE CRIMINAL FROM PROFITING FROM HIS CRIME CAN BE BOTH UNCONSTITUTIONAL AND HARMFUL TO SOCIETY.
Abstract: THE NOTION THAT A CRIMINAL SHOULD BE FORCED TO MAKE REPARATIONS TO HIS VICTIM IS AN ANCIENT ONE. IN OUR LEGAL TRADITION, THIS HAS USUALLY BEEN SOUGHT THROUGH A CIVIL ACTION IN WHICH THE VICTIM SEEKS TO RECOVER MONEY DAMAGES, EITHER FOR THE PAIN AND SUFFERING INFLICTED ON HIM BY THE PERPETRATOR OR TO RECOVER PROPERTY LOST AS A RESULT OF THE CRIME. STATE-FUNDED PROGRAMS TO COMPENSATE CRIME VICTIMS ARE A RECENT PHENOMENON, BUT NOW THEY EXIST IN ALMOST HALF THE STATES. AS A CASE IN POINT, THE NEW YORK LAW PROVIDING STATE COMPENSATION TO VICTIMS OF CRIME IS DESCRIBED. ALTHOUGH THE LAW POSES ADVANTAGES TO ELIGIBLE VICTIMS AND APPEARS TO BE AN EFFECTIVE BAR AGAINST CRIMINALS WHO MIGHT ENRICH THEMSELVES THROUGH PUBLICATIONS, THE REAL PARTIES AT ISSUE ARE THE ATTORNEYS AND OTHER AGENTS OF THE PERPETRATOR WHO CAN TAP FUNDS EARNED BY THE CRIMINAL. ALSO, IT MAY BE ARGUED THAT THE STATUTE IS CONSTITUTIONALLY OBJECTIONABLE IN THAT IT INTERFERES WITH THE RIGHTS GRANTED BY THE FIRST AMENDMENT. IT IMPAIRS THE RIGHT OF FREE SPEECH, AND IT INDIRECTLY AFFECTS A PERSON'S ABILITY TO EXERCISE HIS RIGHT OF FREE SPEECH BY IMPAIRING THE EXERCISE OF THAT RIGHT. IT IS ARGUED THAT THE STATUTE IS INIMICAL TO CONSTRUCTIVE PENOLOGICAL THINKING, LITERARY INTERESTS, AND PRISONERS' RIGHTS OF FREE EXPRESSION. EVEN IN THOSE INSTANCES THAT THE CRIMINAL DOES EXPRESS AN OPINION, HE IS SELDOM PAID FOR IT. MOST OF THE PROFIT DERIVED FROM CRIME REPORTAGE IS ENJOYED BY JOURNALISTS, DEFENSE ATTORNEYS, PROSECUTORS, OR POLICE OFFICERS. FURTHERMORE, A MOST ALARMING FEATURE OF THIS STATUTE IS ITS PROVISION FOR RETROACTIVE APPLICATION. EXTENSIVE NOTES ARE PROVIDED.
Index Term(s): Correctional reform; Law reform; New York; Restitution; Victim compensation
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=68603

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