Nullum crimen sine lege

AuthorLaura-Roxana Popoviciu
PositionFaculty of Juridical and Administration Sciences, the Law Department Agora University of Oradea, Romania Correspondence: Laura-Roxana Popoviciu, Agora University, 8 Pia?aTineretului St., Oradea, Romania E-mail:
AGORA International Journal of Juridical Sciences,
ISSN 1843-570X, E-ISSN 2067-7677
No. 1 (2019), pp. 15- 20
Faculty of Juridical and Administration Sciences, the Law Department
Agora University of Oradea, Romania
Correspondence: Laura-Roxana Popoviciu, Agora University, 8 PiaaTineretului St., Oradea,
ABSTRACT: This article discusses the issue of one of the most important Latin
expressions that establish at the level of general principle that no crime exists outside the law.
The purpose of the criminal law being the defense against the offenses of the right
order, ensuring this order implies a strict respect of the principle of legality.
Part of the principle of legality, the legality of incrimination, was formulated among
the first, by the Beccaria in Dei delitti e delle pene and pr oclaimed also in the Declaration of
Human and Citizen Rights (1789).
Subsequently, the principle of legality of incr imination was passed in most criminal
codes and even in some constitutions.
The Romanian pena l code emphasizes that the incr iminations can only take place by
law, not by other normative acts.
In our law, crime is the sole basis of criminal liability.
The second part of the principle of legality stipulates the legality of the punishments,
so that, the crime being the only theme of the criminal liability, at the time of the commission
the sanction must also intervene. Only when the sanction inter venes, it must be taken into
account in particular that by sanctioning the offenders and the way in which the punishments
are enforced some fundamental rights of the person a re restricted, such as: freedom of
movement, enshrined in all democratic constitutions, free development of the personality of
the man and of his participation in the social and economic life, in the family life, the
interruption of the professional activity and not lastly the affectation of his dignity. Therefore
legality is a fundamental principle of criminal law: the criminalization can only take place
through a law, and the sanction only if it is provided by law.
KEYWORDS: crime, Criminal Code, fundamental principle, incrimination, law
From the summary of the classifications and statements given by the criminal law
theorists rega rding the fundamental principles of criminal law, it is determined that the
principle of legality is of the utmost importance because under this sign sta nds the entire
edifice of modern criminal la w.
The principle of legality is unanimously considered to be one of the fundamental
principles of the European Union, included in the law of all European states and in the
international treaties in criminal matter s, which explains the very small number of the
judgments of the Court r egarding this aspect.

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