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NCJ Number: 82397 Find in a Library
Title: Development and Goals of Practical Criminal Policy (From Polizei und Kriminalpolitik, P 25-32, 1981 - See NCJ-82395)
Author(s): W Schneider
Corporate Author: Bundeskriminalamt
Germany (Unified)
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: Bundeskriminalamt
Wiesbaden, Germany 6200
Format: Document
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: Contemporary West German criminal policy focuses on preventive measures taken before intervention through criminal law becomes necessary.
Abstract: Family, education, and employment issues stand at the forefront of such a policy. Because the laws themselves should serve to forestall criminality, many actions formerly sanctioned by law have been decriminalized - deviant sexual behaviors among consenting adults, adultery, pornography, and some offenses against the public order. Law reform has also sought to protect citizens' rights to demonstrate and obtain divorce. Penalties have been lightened for cases where mitigating circumstances are evidenced or the offender exhibits a willingness to cooperate with the authorities. Indeed, since World War II, the West German criminal codes have been changed 51 times in the effort to deal more effectively with threats to citizen safety from terrorism, juvenile coercion into prostitution, new forms of economic crime, and environmental pollution. Short-term prison sentences (less than 1 year) have been eliminated and transformed into a schedule of fines. In general, sentencing seeks to match the treatment to the offense: drug offenders undergo detoxification and treatment for addiction; other minor or medium-seriousness offenders receive resocialization programs. Juvenile probation represents another reform aimed to bring young offenders back into a positive relationship with society. These efforts remain conflict-bound (offender resocialization v. protection of society), but the policy commitment to less repressive control will continue.
Index Term(s): Cause removal crime prevention; Custody vs treatment conflict; Decriminalization; Germany; Law reform; Policy; Sentencing reform
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