The Adversary System of Trial Essay

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THE ADVERSARY SYSTEM OF TRIAL Grady McCabe The adversary system of trial is used by Australian courts to resolve conflicts and arguments in a fair and peaceful manner. This system is also known as a contest for the truth and was inherited from the United Kingdom. For a criminal case, the prosecution and the defence are responsible for preparing and presenting their own personal facts and version of events to an ‘impartial arbitrator’ who is the judge or magistrate. The adversary trial, like anything, has its advantages and disadvantages. Despite its weaknesses, Australia persists with the adversary system of trial. This is because, it is fair and it protects rights, the community has confidence in the system and it provides for individual control. These points will be developed further, to show why Australia retains this system in most of Australia’s courts. The adversary system of trial provides an unbiased, just and fair hearing for all involved. This is one of its multiple strengths, and why it is still in practice today. The judge or magistrate is much like an umpire in a football match; they are responsible for making sure that all parties follow the rules of procedure in a case. The reasons behind why the adversary system is so fair lies with the role of the impartial adjudicator. They must listen to all the evidence; ensure that each party is treated equally and that the accused individual is considered innocent until proven guilty. Both parties are treated impartially and the rules of evidence and procedure ensure that both parties have an equal opportunity to present their case. It also protects rights; the independence of the judge and the standard and burden of proof provides a basic protection of the rights of individuals and protects the accused from an unfair prosecution. This fairness is one of the reasons Australia still continues with the

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