Causes, types and consequences of false criminalization

: 206-211
Institute of Jurisprudence and Psychology, Lviv Polytechnic National University

The article is devoted to the causes, types and consequences of false criminalization. One of the problems with the criminalization of socially dangerous acts is that various factors can lead to incorrect or so-called erroneous criminalization. Its types are: 1) unjustified criminalization; 2) excessive criminalization; 3) incomplete criminalization; 4) incorrect criminalization. Unjustified (unjustified) criminalization is the recognition of an act as a criminal offense, which is not characterized by sufficient for criminalization nature and degree of harm (danger). That is, in this case, criminalization is carried out in the absence of grounds for this and as a result of a criminal offense is an act that is not objectively so. Excessive criminalization occurs when there is no objective need for criminalization, due to the existence of criminal liability for the act being criminalized. In such a case, criminalization is subject to an act which is characterized by the nature and degree of harm necessary for criminalization, but which does not require criminalization, as criminal liability for it already exists. This leads to the emergence of duplicate or unnecessary special components of criminal offenses. As for incomplete criminalization, it is criminalization that does not cover all acts (manifestations of the act), the nature and degree of harmfulness of which allows to recognize them as criminal offenses. As a result of such criminalization, acts that, based on their essence, should be objectively subject to criminal law measures remain outside the scope of criminal law. Incorrect (inaccurate) criminalization is that when it is committed, an act is recognized as criminal, the nature and degree of harmfulness of which is sufficient for its criminalization, but the legislative description of which does not quite correctly reflect the essence of such an act. That is, in this case there is an incorrect reflection in the law of the essence of the crime. The result of incorrect criminalization is a vague, ambiguous, inaccurate formulation of the signs of a criminal offense, which leads, firstly, to a vague establishment of criminal liability for a particular act, secondly, to difficulties in determining the signs of such an act, thirdly, to problems in distinguishing a criminal act from a noncriminal one, because for these reasons there is a “merger” of signs of the relevant criminal offense and administrative or other offense.

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Slotvinska N. "Causes, types and consequences of false criminalization"