Originating from the Latin word directum, law refers to the postulates of justice that make up the normative order of a society. Based on social relationships, the law is the set of rules that help resolve conflicts arising from human behavior.
Criminal law is the branch of law that establishes and regulates the punishment of crimes or offenses, through the imposition of certain penalties (such as imprisonment, for example).
It is possible to distinguish between objective criminal law (ius poenale), which refers to the criminal legal norms themselves, and subjective criminal law (ius puniendi), which contemplates the application of a sanction to those who update the hypotheses provided by criminal law. objective.
Criminal law is a branch of law. See Abbreviation Finder for acronyms related to Criminal Law.
Characteristics of criminal law
We know that the law is responsible for regulating the activities of men who live in society and who maintain relationships with other men. In this way, the law seeks to protect social peace with norms that are imposed by the authority, who, in turn, has a monopoly on the use of force.
The main objective of criminal law is to promote respect for legal assets (every vital asset of the community or the individual). For this, it prohibits behaviors that are aimed at injuring or endangering a legal right. What criminal law cannot do is prevent certain effects from happening.
The State has two tools to react to crime: security measures (which seek prevention) and penalties (which involve punishment). The penalty, therefore, implies a restriction on the rights of the person responsible.
Criminal law contemplates punishments that may include deprivation of liberty.
As has happened in most aspects of social organization, for criminal law to become what we know today, it was necessary for there to be a fairly slow process, through which different methodologies and ideas were put to the test. and he went looking for the form in which it would finally be constituted. Several stages can be identified in this process, which are:
* Primitive stage: In this period there were no clear laws, but a series of prohibitions derived from firm religious beliefs that imposed harsh punishments on those who dared to violate them, these mandates were called taboo.
There was another term that was that of revenge, which allowed those who suffered any harm from another group, to take justice into their own hands , punishing their aggressors with an evil greater than that received. There were no limits, it was the victims who set them. The successive execution of revenge between individuals from different sides was what repeatedly led to war between them.
* Stage of the Law of Talion: In this period a limit was created to the mentioned revenges which was fixed by the Tables of the Law of Moses; where it is stated that the penalty must be equal in magnitude to the damage suffered.
* Emergence of political justice: With the birth of Roman Criminal Law, justice began to make sense. From this mode arises the differentiation between public and private crimes; the former were those that affected public order and the latter were of a personal nature between two individuals or families. In each case, a different type of punishment was chosen, still based on the law of retaliation, that is, the punishment was imposed based on the damage caused by the individual.
Criminal law today
From this moment, justice as we know it today was slowly consolidated; First, the steps to follow before a criminal process were established (accusation, provision of evidence of the crime and sentence) and later the difference between intentional and negligent crime was established, developing different theories and doctrines that allowed the correct execution of sentences.
Today, according to the contributions made by the various cultures that have been concerned with establishing a code to fairly convict the accused, we have a solid criminal law that theoretically protects those who are innocent and collaborates with the establishment of justice in all its orders; although, unfortunately, this requirement is not met in all cases.