skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 89345 Find in a Library
Title: Polish Criminal Justice System After World War Two - Selected Problems
Journal: University of Pittsburgh Law Review  Volume:44  Issue:139  Dated:(1982)  Pages:139-161
Author(s): S Frankowski
Date Published: 1982
Page Count: 23
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Modest efforts to reform the more repressive aspects of the Polish criminal justice system during the height of the Solidarity movement are not likely to be realized, given the current regime's efforts to maintain control over the citizenry through every conceivable means.
Abstract: After World War II, the Polish criminal justice system was excessively repressive, and the ambit of criminal law was unduly broad, while the interests of the individual were not properly protected. The criminal justice system was designed and used by the ruling party elite as an instrument for achieving the long-term goals of reconstructing society according to principles of orthodox Marxism-Leninism and to protect the communist power structure. Often, the system was also used to attain short-term political goals. In October 1980, a memorandum signed by over 100 criminal law and criminology professors was presented to the Minister of Justice, identifying areas where reform was needed through legislation to remedy the most repressive features of the system. In December 1980, an independent group of scholars, mainly from the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, was formed under the auspices of Solidarity to prepare a blueprint for the future of Polish criminal law. The two groups completed their activities in the late spring of 1981 and presented reports that were to be discussed publicly. As of this writing (December 1981), it appears unlikely that any major reform of Polish criminal law will be adopted in the near future. In any reform, priority should be given to (1) securing the real independence of the judiciary, (2) changing the status of the procuracy by subordinating it to the Ministry of Justice, and (3) introducing some innovative forms of social control over the system's functioning. Tabular data are provided on prison sentences imposed by Polish courts for 1970-79, and 12 footnotes are included.
Index Term(s): Correctional reform; Court reform; Law reform; Poland; Police reform
Note: Based on remarks given by Professor Frankowski at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law on April 8-9, 1982, as part of the Mellon Lecture Series.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.