In their discussions, Pettitt, Monahan, and Ruston observe that the Irish culture is struggling with the complexity of crime in the modern society. The situation is not expected to change any time soon because of the attitudes of the Irish people, which are characterized by a certain belief system. For instance, people regard criminal act as a normal social phenomenon instead of condemning it as evil. People’s emotions towards crime are widespread and intense in the sense that they entail the elements of fascination, fear, anger, and antipathy.
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Criminal behavior in the country is a major political issue that attracts attention of many leaders, both religious and civil. Crime is frequently represented in emotional terms. For many policy makers and members of the public, issues are always raised regarding the victims and safety of the public. The movie suggests that the criminal justice system in the country has often been ineffective and inadequate and many analysts note that something should be done to improve the state of affairs.
Unfortunately, a debate has been ongoing regarding the effectiveness of the law enforcing agencies, including the public prosecution team and the arresting authorities, which has led to the widening of the private security market. In case a family becomes a victim to criminal activities, the police and other investigative units of government are not given the sole role of bringing the perpetrators to book. Instead, a private detective would be called in to help in the process of arresting and prosecuting the criminal. The media plays a critical role of sensitizing members of the public on criminal activities that are widespread in the country to an extent that crime consciousness is institutionalized in the popular culture.
The views of the Irish on crime are likely to lead to populist disciplinary that can be detrimental to the way crime and criminal justice is approached socially and politically. Analysts are of the view that even though Ireland has not reached the same crime consciousness levels as the United Kingdom and the United States their ideas are headed to a direction that is unlikely to achieve the penal-welfare state, which is highly valued and cherished in society.
Republic of Ireland is one of the countries that have always aspired to realize penal-welfare, which combines liberal legalism in administering justice and proportionate punishment whereby criminal behavior is corrected through rehabilitation. The Irish saw the importance of penal-welfare in the criminal justice and moved on to initiate constitutional changes with an aim of upholding fundamental human rights. To the surprise of many people, the state has never done anything substantive to achieve the expectations of the public by ensuring penal-welfare and liberal democracy are achieved instead it has embarked on populist disciplinary, legislation of defective policies, and development of unworkable crime control models.
The direction that the government has taken tries to prevent the activities of criminals, but it does not preserve the basic principles of the country. Studies conducted in other countries, especially the United States, suggest that criminal sanctions alone are not sufficient in controlling the behavior of individuals in any given society. Sanctions should not be employed as the ends, but instead they should be used as the means to achieving a safer society that is free from trouble.
The Republic of Ireland employs two major criminal justice models, but both are not sufficient in addressing the serious criminal activities that go on in the country. Packer developed one of the models termed the Crime Control model in 1969 in the United States that mainly evaluated the effectiveness of criminal sanctions. The model insists on repression of crime in society and the main concern is speeding up the process of arresting, focusing on the outcome, and conducting the entire process efficiently. The model suggests that a criminal should be arrested as soon as possible before being presented to the next stage in the shortest time possible.
The focus is on police interrogation whereby the work of the arresting officers should never be interfered with if efficiency is to be achieved. In this regard, the arrested person does not have any right to access the services of the legal counsel because this would definitely interfere with suspect cooperation. The second model, the Due Process, is different from the first because it insists on allowing the suspect to defend him or herself in the court through lawyers. The model suggests that a suspect has certain rights and privileges that should never be denied irrespective of his or her condition as a criminal. The advocates of the model observed that the state should not be given the exclusive powers to prosecute the individual because of its enormous power and cruelty of its officers.
Many states adopted the Due Process model, including the Republic of Ireland in the early 1990s as suggested in the movie because it was considered a normative trend. Crime analysts in the country observe that Ireland made a mistake of adopting the Due Process model in the early 1990s because it entailed incorporation of a written constitution, something that placed it ahead of Britain regarding the values of criminal justice.
This resulted in serious confusions that had characterized the criminal justice of the country for over one-fifty years. The new model forced the state to prove the suspect guilty, which has never been an easy task given the fact gathering of evidence is tiresome and sometimes a fruitless exercise. In the process of trying to adopt the modern values in criminal justice, the Republic of Ireland has found itself shifting from the traditional due process to the crime control model mainly because of the emergence of new forms of crimes, such as drug trafficking, terrorism, and money laundering.
The growth of the garda powers as far as inter alia is concerned gives law enforcers the power to stop, seize, arrest, detain, interrogate, enter, search, and take forensic samples of the arrested person without their consent. Currently, the suspect does not have any right once arrested because he or she must disclose important information even in the absence of his or her lawyer and the prosecution is allowed to provide other forms of evidence, including documented and videotaped ones. Additionally, the state has the right to deny the suspect bail, especially when the individual is believed to have engaged in a serious crime, such as terrorism, human trafficking, and drug trafficking. Surprisingly, the prosecution team is allowed to abandon preliminary investigations and institute a fresh process to incarcerate the suspect.
The various commentaries, books, and films documenting crime in the country suggest that the due process as a model is no longer followed. Instead, the government is keen on controlling crime using the crime control method. This implies that the state has the power to interfere with the rights of an individual given the fact people are not allowed to defend themselves through their legal representatives.
Analysts ask themselves a number of questions, including how the country achieved the present status, what happened to state officials and the society in general, and what is the way forward. Even though the questions are deemed complex, they are necessary if the state is to reduce the crime rates significantly while at the same time preserve human rights. The law enforcement agencies suggest that the crime rates are in the decline, but the case is different in real terms meaning the sources should not be trusted. Studies show that the crime rates started doubling from 1970s onwards and the case is not any different in other parts of the world.
The Republic of Ireland is one of the few countries that have been registering few crime cases from 2001. While the country’s offences were 23.89 per one-thousand people, the rate in the United States was higher (41.61 per one-thousand people). In Britain and Wales, the rate was higher, at 99.28 per one-thousand people. The murders in the country were simply fifty-two while England and the Wales had a joint eight-hundred and eighty-five. Even though Ireland has the least number of crimes, the public has a different opinion because majority of people considers it a serious issue that affects individual fulfillment and achievement of goals. Therefore, the country should consider going back to the traditional Due Process Model because many people tend to trust it.