Violation Type:Victimless Crime

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Violation Type

Victimless Crime

A legislature proscribes crimes which have no natural victim; that is, they are not harmful or dangerous to any given person, group of people or to society in general.

Such crimes probably make up the majority of criminal law in most countries, and allow the imposition of arbitrary decree. While this may be necessary to the regulation of a modern society, there is an underlying concern: namely that these crimes are not supported by the underlying moral justification of the common law justice system used in the Commonwealth and United States. Further, the common law justice system rapidly ceases to make sense when victimless crimes enter the statute books.

For example, common law safeguards such as "beyond reasonable doubt" do not and cannot make sense or provide meaningful protection in a context where the statute books contain victimless crimes -- see LCIND.

Common criminal law thus must necessarily possess a prohibition of such statutes, because common law cannot make sense when applied to them. Statues imposing arbitrary decrees essentially constitute administrative law, not criminal law, and criminal statues existing today can basically be classified into one of these two categories, yet this distinction is not recognised in any official capacity. Because the moral reasoning underlying the validity of incarceration or other penalty in the context of criminal law in the common law justice system does not hold up in the context of victimless crimes, the recognition of the existence of a third class of action, administrative law, would be a first step to the moral research necessary to determine the protections that make sense in regard of statues prohibiting victimless acts.