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NCJ Number: 68847 Find in a Library
Title: THERAPY CONCEPT IN CRIMINAL LAW REFORM
Journal: BEWAEHRUNGSHILFE  Volume:26  Issue:4  Dated:(1979)  Pages:282-288
Author(s): D VONBUELOW
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 7
Format: Article
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: THE GERMAN CRIMINAL LAW REFORM, WHICH BEGAN IN THE SIXTIES AND IS STILL ONGOING, IS ANALYZED IN TERMS OF THE LEGAL AND SOCIAL IMPLICATIONS TO BE CONSIDERED IN CHANGING FURTHER THE PROVISIONS OF THE LAW.
Abstract: THIS STUDY DISCUSSES THE CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK OF THE ONGOING REFORM OF THE GERMAN CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM AND CRIMINAL CODES. THE CHANGED PENAL PHILOSOPHY BEHIND THE REFORM IS REHABILITATION AND SOCIAL REINTEGRATION, TO BE ACCOMPLISHED THROUGH DECRIMINALIZATION AND SOCIAL THERAPY OF OFFENDERS, INSTEAD OF RETRIBUTION AND PUNISHMENT. IN LINE WITH THE REFORM MOVEMENT AND INCREASED PUBLIC TOLERANCE FOR PRESENTLY CRIMINALIZED BEHAVIOR, LEGISLATORS MUST DIVEST THEMSELVES OF THEIR PERSONAL MORAL AND RELIGIOUS BIASES IN FAVOR OF A STRICTLY LEGAL AND SOCIALLY ORIENTED APPROACH. DURING THE TRANSITION FROM THE OLD PENAL PHILOSOPHIES TO THE NEW, PROGRESSIVE CONCEPTS, CLEAR-CUT LEGAL DEFINITIONS OF CRIMINAL ACTS AND CORRESPONDING SANCTIONS WILL HAVE TO BE FOLLOWED. THE CONCEPT OF CRIMINAL RESPONSIBILITY WILL HAVE TO BE A GUIDELINE FOR THE DISPOSITION OF INDIVIDUAL CASES WHEN IT MUST BE DETERMINED WHETHER OFFENDERS ARE SOCIALLY HANDICAPPED, WITH DIMINISHED DISCRIMINATION POWERS OF RIGHT AND WRONG, AND THE INCAPACITY TO COPE WITH CRIMINOGENIC SITUATIONS THAT WOULD NOT AFFECT INTELLECTUALLY AND EMOTIONALLY STRONGER INDIVIDUALS. WITH REGARD TO TREATMENT OR SOCIAL THERAPY ADMINISTERED TO CONVICTED OFFENDERS, OTHER LEGAL AND ETHICAL ISSUES MAY HAVE TO BE MET -- FOR EXAMPLE, THE CONVICTED OFFENDER'S VOLUNTARY ACCEPTANCE OF THERAPY OR ITS REJECTION. IN THE LATTER CASE, SOCIAL THERAPY MAY BE ADMINISTERED TO THE SUBJECT UNAWARES, BY PLACING HIM IN SITUATIONS THAT ARE LIKELY TO STIMULATE POSITIVE REACTIONS OF SOCIAL THERAPY MAY BE ADMINISTERED TO THE SUBJECT UNAWARES, BY PLACING HIM IN SITUATIONS THAT ARE LIKELY TO STIMULATE POSITIVE REACTIONS OF SOCIAL READUSTMENT. PSYCHOLOGICAL COUNSELING IS IMPOSSIBLE WITHOUT THE CLIENT'S WILLING PARTICIPATION. MEDICAL AND SURGICAL TREATMENT FOR BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION CAN ONLY BE PERFORMED WITH THE PATIENT'S CONSENT. IN SOME CASES, THIS ISSUE MAY BE COMPLICATED BY THE PATIENT'S INCAPABILITY TO GIVE LEGALLY VALID CONSENT. PROBLEMS OF THIS NATURE WILL HAVE TO BE SOLVED BEFORE THE LAW REFORM CAN BEGIN TO ACHIEVE ITS STATED OBJECTIVES.
Index Term(s): Citizen crime tolerance; Coordinating Council Juvenile Just and Delinquency Prevention; Correctional reform; Criminal codes; Criminal responsibility; Custody vs treatment conflict; Decriminalization; Germany; Rehabilitation
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=68847

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