Plea Bargaining. Essay

1663 words - 7 pages

Plea-bargaining means pleading guilty to a lesser charge: the practice of arranging with the prosecution, and sometimes a judge, for a defendant to plead guilty to a less serious charge rather than be tried for a more serious one.Don't criminal defendants have the right to plea bargain every case?Absolutely not. A defendant has the right either to plead guilty to the entire indictment or to demand a trial. Plea bargaining requires the court's permission and the district attorney's consent.The Pros of plea bargaining are :1) plea bargaining saves taxpayers an enormous amount of money.2) It often provides the evidence for a conviction and allows public defenders and other court officials to concentrate their limited resources on more important or difficult cases.3) without plea bargaining many criminals would never be punished for their crimes at all.4) Without plea bargaining the court's could not function unless there were drastic increases in budget allowance. The courts are at present full and running over and if all the cases were to be tried the courts budgets would have to be increased5) For a judge, the primary incentive for accepting a plea bargain is to move along a crowded calendar. Most judges simply don't have time to try every case that comes through the door. Judges often reason that using plea bargains to "process out" offenders who are not likely to do much jail time leads to fewer problems with overcrowding.6) Plea bargains tend to lighten everyone's caseload. Because plea bargains are much quicker and require less work than trials, they are also easier on the prosecutor's budget.7) an assured conviction. No matter how strong the evidence, no case is ever a "slam dunk." The prosecution may wage a long, expensive and valiant battle, and still lose the case.8) Plea bargains also give prosecutors flexibility. For instance, they can offer a deal to someone whom, though guilty, has given testimony about a co-defendant or helped resolve some other troubling case.9) prosecutors may use plea bargains to circumvent laws they don't agree with. For instance, a prosecutor may disagree with laws prohibiting possession for personal use of small amounts of marijuana, so the prosecutor's office may have an unwritten policy of giving all such offenders "offers they can't refuse," such as a $25 fine and 10 hours of community service. Or, in some cases, the prosecutor may simply dismiss the case in the interests of justice.10) For most defendants, the principal benefit of plea bargaining is receiving a lighter sentence for a less severe charge than might result from taking the case to trial and losing.11) Another fairly obvious benefit that defendants can reap from plea bargaining is that if they're represented by private counsel, they can save a bundle on attorney fees. It almost always takes more time and effort to bring a case to trial than to negotiate and handle a plea bargain.12) other pros for a defendant for taking a plea bargain is, getting...

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