Journal of Victimology and Victim Justice

Sage Publications, Inc.
Publication date:

Latest documents

  • Restorative Justice for Sexual Violence Offences in England and Wales: The Challenges Ahead

    While an increased number of restorative justice (RJ) cases involving sexual violence are observed across England and Wales, the extent and scope of its use remain unclear. This article presents the findings of a brief survey distributed amongst RJ practitioners across England and Wales which aimed to understand the use of RJ in cases of sexual violence. We found that while RJ is widely used in such cases, a comprehensive national picture remains unknown. We found problems both collating and analysing the data because of definitional differences, varying organizational recording mechanisms (within and between organizations and geographical boundaries) plus a lack of national direction across the criminal justice system. We call for the development of a sound evidence base that will promote and support the use of RJ for cases involving sexual violence.

  • A Socio-legal Study in the Cambodian Ponzi Scheme: With Reference to Japan and the United States

    This article recommends establishing an investment fraud investigation, a Customer Consultant Agency and a Victim’s Fund Recovery Team to address the problem of the Ponzi scheme in Cambodia. Furthermore, the paper also details how the enactment and law reform prevent customers or investors from becoming the scheme victims and improve prevention, detection, prosecution and fund recovery through the analysis of case studies. This paper focuses on domestic laws and supports that Cambodia should follow the US and Japan systems to counter the Ponzi scheme. This problem should be addressed through international cooperation in a strategic partnership way.

  • Digital Evidence in Police Investigation: A Comparative Analysis of Challenges Faced in India, the UK and the United States

    This research explores the challenges posed by the use of digital evidence in criminal investigations, particularly in the context of fair trial and the presumption of innocence. The article identifies three key issues that could compromise the impartiality and presumption of innocence in investigations, namely, improper and inconsistent use of technology, outdated procedural assurances and a lack of reliability testing in practice. The findings highlight the need for legislative intervention, enforcement of standards and implementation of validation procedures for digital evidence to protect innocent individuals and all parties involved in criminal proceedings. The article also examines how digital evidence practices adhere to fair trial standards and how technology-assisted investigations affect criminal procedures. The study draws on data obtained from a project conducted by the Economic and Social Research Council on the application of digital forensics in police forces in England and the United States. The research provides insights into the evolving nature of investigations in connection to the rising demand for digital expertise and the distribution and coordination of related resources in the police forces.

  • Access to Justice for Victims of Crime in India: An Analysis of Section 372 CrPC

    This article focuses on the right of victims to invoke Section 372 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. In India, over the past decade or so, concerns about victims of crime have increased significantly and the need for victims to participate in criminal proceedings has practically been built into the legal framework. Perhaps, the judicial process lacks in assisting the victims in a trial. This article focuses on cases where the victim appeals against an acquittal or for lesser offences or imposes inadequate compensation. Notwithstanding an appeal, this proceeding can also be dismissed for several reasons. While this paper builds the rationality behind invoking this section, it also looks into the extent to which this section could provide justice to the victims. This goes in line with the UN Declaration of basic principles such as access to justice and fair treatment, restitution, compensation and victim assistance. The absence of a definition of appeal in the statutory law and provisions for victims’ right to appeal delimits the scope of enhancement of sentence for the accused which is a right reserved only to the State. Moreover, this article helps researchers deepen their research on the perspective of victimology and the need for victim service providers to uphold victim justice.

  • Twitter-generated Moral Panic and Its Effect on Pretrial Incarceration/ Bail: Contextualizing the Tale of ‘Folk Devil’ Aryan Khan

    The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, which was enacted with an intent to control drug abuse and prohibit its trade, has blurred the line between the offender and the victim, particularly in cases of addicts. Nonetheless, the focus of this study is the multifarious victimization of the offender: overcriminalization in terms of measures, lengthy pretrial incarceration and increased sensationalism in cases of offenders belonging to high strata of society, thus creating a moral panic. Incident of victimization is juxtaposed with public concern solicited by the reporting of cases. The stigmatization endured and the trauma suffered by the accused owing to the full media glare strike on their innocence and violate their right to life and dignity. Aim and Objective: A criminal justice system is an institutionalized means of rendering justice. One of the virtuous traits of a criminal justice system modelled on the ethos of due process is its attempt to achieve certainty and transparency in its process and the outcomes. However, no institution is infallible as manifested by the misuse of draconian provisions of the NDPS Act 1985. This study first evaluates whether disposal of bail matters in NDPS cases is a classic case of overcriminalization leading to the victimization of the offender; second, it gauges the impact of public reaction depicting ‘moral panic’ of the offender in the disposal of bail matters. Methodology: The study was conducted through a detailed content analysis of the public reaction in the Aryan Khan drug case on the micro-blogging site Twitter with the help of the content analysis tool NVivo. Findings: The outcome of the study manifests positive interrelationship between moral panic and public perception, positive interrelationship between moral panic and status of the person arrested which consequentially affects the period of pretrial incarceration (denial of bail).

  • Child Victims’ Interactions with Criminal Justice: An Observational Study in West Bengal

    Crime occurrence has a serious impact on its victims; the toll is even greater when it concerns children. They have to undergo severe physical, psychological and emotional trauma in the aftermath of a crime. When children interact with the criminal justice system, they are put through the gruelling processes of the police investigation, recording statements, medical examination, appearance in courts, cross-examination and so on. Each component has its own impact on the children, with studies suggesting that participation of children in the ‘adult’ criminal justice process can be confusing, distressing and even re-traumatizing. With international efforts to put victims as salient to the criminal justice discourse, things have changed. Recognizing the ineptness of the adult processes in their application towards justice to child victims, States have modified the complexities and attempted to establish a parallel system of justice dispensation that is more ‘child-friendly’. India, on its part, has passed the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012, to redefine the processes in its application to children, especially in matters of child sexual abuse. Thus, special courts are set up, incorporating special measures to ensure the privacy, confidentiality and comfort of the child victims who appear before them. Based on an observational study of ‘special’ and ‘designated’ courts in the State of West Bengal, the present article indicates that Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO Act) directives are still not in place. The insufficient number of fast-track courts, unavailability of dedicated personnel, infrastructural inadequacies and inappropriate processes still mar the justice system. The article forwards suggestions that are imperative to improve the overall experience of child victims.

  • Genesis of Crime and Victim in a Commodity-exchange Society: Theoretical and Empirical Underpinnings of the Rise in Cyber Crimes in India

    How is criminality, as a social relation, defined and redefined? Scholars have often explained the same through change in material realities in the political economy. This article attempts to answer the same by premising on Pashukanis’ theory of commodity exchange. He claimed that the definition and progression of criminal liability as a social category resulted from how commodity was exchanged in any particular epoch. It was in the bourgeois epoch that this liability was widened, and this could be possible only after the universalization of the rights-based category—the legal subject. Is this theorization visible, in its materiality, in Sutherland’s comprehension of the white-collar criminal? In the twentieth century, Sutherland, in his work titled ‘White-Collar Crimes’, observed that a novel kind of crime was being committed because of the creation of the middle class in the United States of America. Its victims were the consumers. Is a similar phenomenon visible in twenty-first-century India? What does the universal access to data and greater commission of cybercrimes suggest? This article aims to tie a thread between these three scholars by asking a question—does criminal liability, as a social category and the creation of novel victims, get defined by how the commodity is exchanged in a particular epoch? In other words, this article suggests that the rise of cybercrimes in India should be looked at through the lens of Pashukanis’ commodity-exchange theory.

  • It Is Not Your Fault, Tell Someone: Case Studies of Young Women’s Experiences of Online Grooming in England

    This research study aimed to explore how young people experience cybercrime, with the study being inductive. Thus, the type of crime(s) emerged from the convenience sample and so happened to be online grooming of young women. Using the case study method, two semi-structured interviews were conducted with young women who were ages 12 and 16 (at the time of the study) with in-depth information provided for each case. The data were then triangulated between the research team and the Victim Service who co-created the study (including materials) and co-produced the manuscript. This method of triangulation also occurred to ensure the similarities and differences identified in the discussion. Similarities included that both young women had a trusted adult to tell and that they were not to blame. Differences occurred with the police involvement as well as contradictions in the advice of ‘just block them’. This study calls for better school-based interventions and police response using actual case studies for training and education. Suggestions for future research are further explored and include more tailored quantitative projects, further case studies and other qualitative methods, and a standardized curriculum for safety that can be devised with the Victim Service. Most importantly, if online grooming occurs, this is not because the individual has done something wrong or deserves it, rather they should tell an adult and seek help to end the behaviour.

  • Do Offenders [Fraudsters] ‘Collaborate and Listen’? A Quantitative Analysis of Fraudsters’ Decision-making Processes on Active Cybercrime Marketplaces
  • Surrogacy Contract: Issues and Challenges

    The recent addition of the laws relating to surrogacy in India has widened the scope of this practice and opened the gates for discussions as to the contractual obligations of the parties. This article talks about how the laws relating to surrogacy evolved in India after independence. It also emphasizes the rights of the parties as mentioned in the Surrogacy Regulation Bill, 2020. Further, it focuses on the surrogacy contracts and the issues and challenges with the same taking into consideration the brfeach of surrogacy contract.

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