The victim and the prosecutor: the relevance of victims in prosecution decision making

Author(s)Flatman, Hon. Justice and Bagaric, Dr M.
Title The victim and the prosecutor: the relevance of victims in prosecution decision making
Source Deakin Law Review 2001
Date 2001
Document type Journal article
Coverage Australia
Summary This paper discusses what influence, if any, the victim ought to have in the decision to commence, or continue, proceedings and the plea negotiation process. The authors consider that any change in the participatory rights of victims should only occur following a consideration of the victim's place in the criminal justice system as a whole, and including the role and function of prosecution official. There is a brief discussion of victim impact statements and restorative justice followed by an examination of some of the practical reasons for the disassociation between victims and prosecution decisions. The functions and role of the prosecutor are then examined and discussed. In conclusion, the authors suggest that the prosecutor has an overriding duty of fairness for the accused and the victim and this provides a doctrinally sound basis for according victims greater input into prosecution decisions.
Keywords Victim impact statements; criminal justice system; victims expectations; restorative justice.
Topic Victim impact statements