The plea agreement - a new way of negotiated justice in the european judiciaries

AuthorLiviu-Alexandru Lascu
PositionFaculty of Law, Agora University of Oradea, Romania
Pages66-77
AGORA International Journal of Juridical Sciences, http://univagora.ro/jour/index.php/aijjs
ISSN 1843-570X, E-ISSN 2067-7677
No. 2 (2019), pp. 66 - 77
66
THE PLEA AGREEMENT A NEW WAY OF NEGOTIATED
JUSTICE IN THE EUROPEAN JUDICIARIES
L.A. LASCU
Liviu-Alexandru LASCU
Faculty of Law, Agora University of Oradea, Romania
Correspondence: Liviu-Alexandru Lascu, Agora University, 8 Piaţa Tineretului St., Oradea,
Romania,
E-mail: liviu.lascu@univagora.ro
ABSTRACT:
The aim of this article is to emphasize the main features of the Plea Agreement
procedure in the European traditional systems, common law and civil law, as well as the
features of this concept as it has been implemented into the proceedings of some European
countries and, accordingly, to analyse the reasons for which, the expertise of these already
implemented procedures might be a pathway to solve many shortcomings of the national
jurisdictions.
KEY WORDS: plea agreement, plea bargaining, guilty plea, negotiated justice, ad-
hoc tribunals, adversarial, inquisitorial, common law, civil law.
1. INTRODUCTORY REMARKS
The Plea Agreement is a criminal proceeding arising from the Anglo - American
judiciaries and consists in the fact that both the prosecutor and the Defense, taking into
account the specific circumstances of the case, reach a mutually beneficial agreement.
According to this agreement, the defendant accepts a self-incrimination while the prosecutor
ensures a more convenient penalty than that the defendant would expect, if found guilty at the
final judgment. Subsequently, this agreement must be approved by the court, thus relieving
the judicial authorities to conducting adjudicative judgment according to the classical
procedure. In such proceedings, in exchange for the defendants admission of the alleged
facts, depending on the jurisdiction to which we refer, the prosecutor have some different
bargaining tools: he may waive some charges in exchange for the defendants admission of
committing others; he may offer a reduced penalty; he may offer lighter modes or less
coercive forms of penalty enforcement; he can guarantee a range of benefits within the
witness protection programs in exchange of the defendants self incrimination and further
cooperation for the prosecution of other criminals.
It is not completely random why this special procedure appeared in the criminal
jurisprudence of the Common Law states, also known as the adversarial judicial systems.
Here, the State, represented by the prosecutor, is only a part within the criminal process,
sharing exactly the same statute like the defendant and the pattern of the process appears to be
very similar to that of a civil process. In addition to this aspect, the adversarial systems
traditionally provided significant procedural rights and safeguards for defendant while the

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