The legal system of North Korea is a fascinating and perfect blend of the two main classes of trial systems. The oldest form of legal system is the inquisitorial system. Under this system, a crime is investigated and decided by the court, and usually presided over by a qualified judge. Lawyers can be hired by a citizen to oversee court proceedings to ensure that they are carried out properly, but they play a mostly passive roll, only acting as a referee. In an adversarial system, the case is investigated by a prosecution and a defense to better uncover the truth on both sides. In this system, the cases are presided over by a judge to maintain order, but the verdict is decided by a random number of citizens, known as a jury. The legal system of North Korea is a careful blend of the two. In their system, the judge and two assistants lay forth the charges to a defendant, who is allowed to have an attorney to defend them. The accused argues for their innocence against the evidence laid against them, and when the trial concludes the judge decides the guilt and sentence of the defendant. This system is a drastic improvement over the two legal systems whose ideas are contained therein. The adversarial system is very flawed in the idea that citizens, with no legal training or experience are supposed to understand and interpret laws correctly in a case that could impact the remainder of someone’s life. In the North Korean system, a fully qualified judge is present to interpret law and determine guilt. Furthermore, the Inquisitorial system is flawed because the information only comes from one source, the government, so information can be looked over or misrepresented, while in the North Korea the defendant is allowed a lawyer to investigate the case levied by the judiciary, therefore guaranteeing both points of view be represented. All in all, the North Korean legal system is the perfect combination of two ancient but flawed practices.

Judge Gavel

24th, 2014 Ji-Min Kang July. “How law and order works in North Korea.” NK News – North Korea News. N.p., 24 July 2014. Web. 14 Feb. 2017.

“North Korea – The Judiciary.” North Korea – The Judiciary. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Feb. 2017.

Rastogi, Nina. “How do court trials work in North Korea?” Slate Magazine. N.p., 14 May 2009. Web. 14 Feb. 2017.

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