Definition of a Prosecutor
Prosecutor is a government official that is a legal representative of the prosecution being the in charge of all criminal proceedings. Prosecutor defends the case brought against the accused person. He/she is responsible throughout the investigation process by the police through trial.
Who is a Public Prosecutor? Public prosecutors are law attorneys that are appointed by the state or a government as its representatives in legal matters. They are appointed by the state government under the provisions of the criminal procedure code. He/she is an important officer of the state government.
In Japan and Germany, prosecutors are appointed and dismissed by the ministry of Justice. In Japan, public prosecution runs parallel to a unitary court system. In the UK, prosecution is carried out in the name of the crown and it is often referred to as “the crown.” In France, public prosecution is carried out by a single office that has representatives in courts. States and counties have their own prosecutors in America.
Classes of Public Prosecutors
There are several classes and important ones are as following:
- Public Prosecutor
- Additional Public Prosecutor appointed by the State Government
- Public Prosecutor appointed by the Central Government
- Special Public Prosecutor appointed by the Central Government
- Public Prosecutor appointed by the State Government
Difference between Prosecutor and Lawyer
A lawyer practices law as an attorney, advocate, attorney at law, barrister, barrister-at-law, bar-at-law, counsel, counselor, counselor, or mediator.
The main difference between them is that the prosecuting is the representation of the state while the lawyer is a professional who represents his clients in the court.
Prosecutor Job Description
The job description is limited to presenting evidence and giving a final summation. The prosecution is the party responsible for presenting the case in a Criminal Court against a person accused of violating the law.
The prime responsibilities include the following:
- Advising counsel in court
- Questioning and interviewing witnesses
- Collaboration with police officers
- Ensuring that criminals are punished
- Handling appeals
- Liaising with criminal justice
- Performing Legal Research
- Preparing criminal cases for trial
- Reading through police reports
- Screening possible criminals
- Planning the prosecution of case
- Working with court staff
The main duties of a Prosecutor
The purpose of a criminal trial is to investigate the offence and to determine the guilt or innocence of the accused. The main duty is to represent the state, not the police. Their main responsibility relates to the welfare of the public to apply the administration of justice. They shall:
- Act according to law
- Protect human rights
- Always serve the public interest
- Practice highest standards of integrity
- Show impartiality and independence
- Remain unaffected by individual or sectional interests
- Maintain the honor and dignity of their profession
- Always protect an accused person’s right to a fair trial
- Perform their duties without fear, favor or prejudice
- Get themselves updated about relevant legal developments
- Always conduct themselves in accordance with the ethics of their profession
- Search for the truth and assist the court to arrive at the truth
How to become a best prosecutor? Best ones have following skills:
- Have Law degree from an accredited law school.
- Good reasoning and logical skills
- Have thorough understanding of the community’s needs
- Must be a member of the Bar Association
- Excellent public speaking abilities
- Must have superior research skills
- Possess effective communication skills
- Strong written and oral communication
Rights of Prosecutors
- States shall ensure that prosecutors are able to perform their professional functions without hindrance.
- State will ensure that they are able to carry out their responsibilities independently and in accordance with the standards of justice.
- State will not arbitrarily diminish their salaries or other benefits.
- They shall be free to form professional associations.
- They shall be free to join organizations.
- They would be free to represent their interests.
- They will have freedom of expression and belief.
- They can form any type of assembly or association.
- They shall be free to promote their professional training and to protect their status.
- They should be entitled to perform their professional functions without harassment and improper interference.
- They shall have the right to take part in public discussion of matters concerning the law and justice.
- They shall be physically protected by the authorities when their personal safety is threatened.
Role of prosecutors in criminal proceedings
- Prosecutors shall perform their duties fairly and independently.
- Throughout the course of the proceedings, he/she will firmly prosecute the case in accordance with the evidence.
- He/she will perform his professional functions consistently and expeditiously.
- He/she shall perform an active role in criminal proceedings.
- Will actively participate in the investigation of crime.
- They will always act in the public interest.
- He/she will collaborate with the police impartially and professionally.
- He/she shall seek to ensure that appropriate action is taken against criminals.
- Under local law and practice, they exercise a supervisory function in relation to the implementation of court decisions.
- Examine proposed evidence to ascertain if it has been lawfully obtained.
- They should ensure that the investigating services respect fundamental human rights.
- Will comply with the legal precepts of investigation.
- Refuse to take evidence believed to have been obtained through unlawful methods.
Role of the prosecutor at the post-sentencing stage
- Prosecutors shall ensure that the interests of society are safeguarded.
- Depending on the jurisdiction, they will play an important role in the process of conditional release of offenders.
- They supervise over the legality of detentions and of the living conditions of the detainees within prisons.
- They should ensure that the human rights of detainees are safeguarded.
- They should ensure that the conditions of detention do not amount to inhuman treatment.
- They should promote disciplinary or criminal proceedings against those responsible.
- They will have to play different roles at the post-sentencing stage. Some of these roles are as follows:
- Considering an appeal by the prosecution against sentence.
- Responding to an appeal by the defense against conviction and sentence.
- Responding to new evidence being presented that was not available at trial.
- Supervision of prison conditions for those serving a sentence.
- Providing input into the issue of conditional release of offenders Informing victims of the release and whereabouts of offenders.