Article title The Conceptual Framework of Criminal Law and Its Scientifically practical Significance
Authors
Name of magazine Legal journal «Law of Ukraine» (Ukrainian version)
Issue 4/2018
Сторінки [205-222]
DOI https://doi.org/10.33498/louu-2018-04-205
Annotation

There is much importance in the issue of the conceptual framework of criminal law and its components – concepts, categories and legal terminology for the theory and practice of criminal law. However, it is still waiting for a proper scientific research and therefore is not sufficiently developed. The purpose of this article is to provide a general characterization and clarify the significance of the conceptual framework for the theory and practice of criminal law, and to study its components: concepts, categories and legal terminology, establish their essential and basic features, system-forming relations and connections. The conceptual framework of criminal law is seen as a system of interrelated and interacting elements: concepts, categories and legal terminology which in their entirety form a respective composite legal concept. The essence of this framework is that in the text of law its elements represent the real-world objects (phenomena) associated with the domain of social relations which arise and function in connection with crimes, punishments and other procedures under criminal law. The functional role of concepts, categories and terminology of criminal law is to define criminal law provisions, institutions, legal structures, and other regulatory legal constructs which make up the contents of criminal law, and to entrench the same in the text of law. Following the analysis made, the author justifies the conclusion about major importance of the conceptual framework and its elements for the science of criminal law, law-making and the application practice of law on criminal liability. Concepts are interpreted as logical and legal constructs of criminal law which reflect and entrench in their contents the essential common typical features of a certain class (type) of real-world objects (phenomena) in the domain of crimes, punishments and other criminal law procedures which distinguish them from other objects (phenomena). The logical structure of concepts defines their contents and the scope expressed in a verbal form. Depending on the scope of generalization, specific and generic concepts are distinguished, and depending on the role in criminal law science and practice – doctrinal and legal concepts. The main features of criminal law concepts are examined: formal certainty and accuracy which allow determining their contents and scope rather clearly and completely in each particular case and, accordingly, establishing the range of realworld objects (phenomena) which are reflected in relevant concepts. At the same time, the author examines the evaluation concepts having no clearly defined contents and scope, with the procedure of their application associated with the evaluation and cognitive activity and, accordingly, with the law administration discretion. It is proposed to limit their use in criminal law, and at the same time recommendations are made on the special procedure of their application. Categories are interpreted as fundamental criminal law concepts having an extremely broad scope, such as “law on criminal liability”, “concept of crime”, “corpus delicti” and its elements, the concept of punishment and etc. It is emphasized that categories have a major methodological importance, in particular, for the purpose of streamlining the system of concepts and for a more thorough understanding of each of them. The author maintains the position that the contents of the conceptual framework of criminal law, along with the concepts, also incorporate (just like in other branches of law) the categories inherent in it as an indispensable and very important attribute. The terminology of criminal law is defined as a system of legal terms – special-purpose language units made of characters using which the concepts and categories incorporated in the contents of criminal law are defined (entrenched) in the text of law in a verbal form. The article examines the essential features of criminal law terms as the fundamental units of terminology, with a focus on the rigid connection of criminal law terms and its concepts and categories. Basic requirements to the terminology of criminal legislation are formulated. In conclusion, the main provisions of the issue under research are given and its importance is emphasized for improvement of criminal law-making, the current criminal law application practice and the development of legal science.

 

Keywords conceptual framework of criminal law; criminal law concepts; criminal law categories; criminal law terminology; criminal law
References

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Thesis abstracts

30. Pitetskiy V, ‘Otsenochnye ponyatiya v sovetskom ugolovnom prave’ [‘Evaluation Concepts in Soviet Criminal Law’] (avtoref dis kand yurid nauk, Sverdlovskiy yuridicheskiy institut 1979) (in Russian).

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