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Seeking Security

Pre-Empting the Commission of Criminal Harms

Editor(s): G R Sullivan, Ian Dennis
Media of Seeking Security
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Published: 13-04-2012
Format: PDF eBook (?)
Edition: 1st
Extent: 370
ISBN: 9781847319296
Imprint: Hart Publishing
RRP: £85.50
Online price : £68.40
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Loren Epson

About Seeking Security

Many academic criminal lawyers and criminal law theorists seek to resolve the optimum conditions for a criminal law fit to serve a liberal democracy. Typical wish lists include a criminal law that intervenes against any given individual only when there is a reasonable suspicion that s/he has caused harm to the legally protected interests of another or was on the brink of doing so. Until there is conduct that gives rise to a reasonable suspicion of criminal conduct by an individual, s/he should be allowed to go about his or her business free from covert surveillance or other forms of intrusion. All elements of crimes should be proved beyond any reasonable doubt. Any punishment should be proportionate to the gravity of the wrongdoing and when the offender has served this punishment the account should be cleared and good standing recovered. Seeking Security explores the gap between the normative aspirations of liberal, criminal law scholarship and the current criminal law and practice of Anglophone jurisdictions. The concern with security and risk, which in large part explains the disconnection between theory and practice, seems set to stay and is a major challenge to the form and relevance of a large part of criminal law scholarship.

Table Of Contents

Seeking Security: An Introduction
G R Sullivan and Ian Dennis
1 Identification, Surveillance and Profiling: On the Use and Abuse of Citizen Data
Malcolm Thorburn
2 On the Legitimacy of Imposing Direct and Indirect Obligations to Disclose Information on Non-Suspects
Shlomit Wallerstein
3 Prophylactic Crimes
AP Simester
4 Harmless Wrongdoing and the Anticipatory Perspective on Criminalisation
Jeremy Horder
5 Risk and Inchoate Crimes: Retribution or Prevention?
Larry Alexander and Kimberly Kessler Ferzan
6 Risks, Culpability and Criminal Liability
7 Preventive Detention at the Margins of Autonomy
John Stanton-Ife
8 Security, Risk and Preventive Orders
Ian Dennis
9 Imprisonment under the Precautionary Principle
Peter Ramsay
10 Erring on the Side of Safety: Risk Assessment, Expert Knowledge, and the Criminal Court
Lucia Zedner
11 The Test for Dangerousness
Martin Wasik
12 Culpability in Self-defence and Crime Prevention
Jonathan Rogers
13 The Hard Treatment of Innocent Persons in State Responses to the Threat of Large Scale, and Imminent Terrorist Violence: Examining the Legal Constraints
G R Sullivan


“... a masterful collection of essays on a topic of tremendous, and increasing, importance.

Seeking Security is a collection of essays greater than the sum of its parts (which all anthologies aspire to be, but so few actually are). It will reward careful reading by anyone interested in contemporary criminal law theory or moral, social and political philosophy, as well as providing rich fodder for anyone interested in understanding how even liberal democracies can lose their way in times of insecurity. I highly recommend it.

” –  Susan Dimock, Dialogue, November 2013

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