Over the years, the Western and English have developed the conception of fundamental fairness in the relationship between governments and their people. The major breakthrough in the concept of fairness to individuals is the writing of the Magna Carta in 1215. This famous document was signed by King John, the English Monarch, which guaranteed that the rights of individuals would be respected by the government, including those that are accused of criminal activities (Ingram, 2008). The Magna Carta established that the government and the executive would be bound by the law, and the people would be free from being imprisoned unlawfully. It also provided that justice will not be sold or bought (Ingram, 2008).
In the current field of criminal procedure, there is the provision of fairness and justice that promotes equality in the way people who are accused or suspected of a crime are treated. Because the origin of fairness comes from both the Constitutions of the United and the constitutions of various states, its application and substance will vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The decisions that are made by the Supreme Court of the United States are always binding to the criminal justice practices of the states if they involve federal constitution issues.
Although constitutional decisions are obligatory in the criminal justice systems of states, such decisions should dictate negligible legal protections that are required under the federal systems (Carp & Stidam, 1985). Each state has the duty to go the extra mile beyond the basic federal guarantees by offering enhanced and greater constitutional rights to the accused or suspected persons. In addition, states should grant better criminal procedures protections based on considerations of state statutory law as well as state appellate case law.
The fictitious criminal offender is Dennis Homer; a 46-year old CEO of Jelly Blue Inc. Dennis Homer’s company was a huge corporation in the late 1900s in the energy industry. However, during the early 2000s there were rumors that swirled around involvement in illegal accounting procedures with the accounting firm that they were using called Anderson
Accounting. This was one of the top accounting firms at that time.
Dennis Homer, who also acted as the COO had allegedly hidden billions of dollars of debt via poor financial reporting, loopholes in accounting, and the use of special purpose entities. He also deceived the board of directors about the accounting practices and convinced Arthur Thurman of the Anderson Accounting to go along for the ride with him. After the stock had plummeted, the Securities and Exchange Commission conducted an investigation that led to Dennis Homer being arrested.
At the state level, the criminal court systems initially commence when the felony complaint is filed. The criminal action is usually commenced by filing an accusatory instrument with the state criminal court. In the fictitious criminal offender’s case, a felony complaint is filed against Dennis Homer and Arthur Thurman. If several complaints are filed in the course of the same criminal action then such action is commenced when the first of the each instrument is filed (Tanenhaus, David Spinoza, 2008). However, the only way that a criminal action can commence in a superior court is by filing with a grand jury for an indictment against a defendant who has never been held by a local criminal court.
Subsequently, an arrest warrant is issued before any a preliminary hearing of Dennis Homer and Arthur Thurman case. This hearing is made before a judge who will set a bond amount. The felony charges and plea were eventually are entered at arraignment (Carp & Stidam, 1985). Information and important data should be shared between all the parties and the trial initialized. The case eventually resulted in a 4-year prison sentence for Arthur Thurman and a 6-year prison sentence the CEO, Dennis Homer.
In the case the defendants would like to appeal the outcomes of the case, they will file an appeal in the federal courts. The structure of the federal judicial system is very simple to work with. The federal juridical system contains the districts courts that are also trial courts and hear almost every type of federal issues. There is a total of 94 federal judicial district courts that are grouped into 12 regional circuits (Tanenhaus, David Spinoza, 2008). Each of these regional circuits has a court of appeals where disputes arising from district court cases are heard.
The accused have a right to appeal if they are not satisfied with the decision of local courts. They should first file the appeal to the federal court of appeal, and the trial court records are filed. The oral arguments are then heard, and the appellate court renders a decision considering the arguments that were presented. There is a review that is requested and granted by the Supreme Court of the state. The Supreme Court has justices who are appointed by the president, with the consent and advice of the Senate. The records of the case of the two defendants are filed, and oral arguments held. Lastly, the decisions that the Supreme Court renders are final.
Carp, R. A., & Stidham, R. (1985). The federal courts. Washington, DC: CQ Press.
Ingram, J. L. (2008). Criminal Procedure Theory and Practice (2nd ed.).
Tanenhaus, David Spinoza. (2008). Encyclopedia of the Supreme Court of the United States. Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA.