Based on one of the largest observational studies of legal professional practice ever conducted, this book refutes the common conception of criminal cases as a fight between adversaries of equal strength, in which defense lawyers offset the intrusive potential of the State. The authors set their study against a background of the professionalization of criminal justice and the rapidly expanding state funding for criminal defense services. They examine the processes by which lawyers are educated and trained and make a detailed analysis of how cases are handled. The research reveals the significant role played by paralegals and unqualified staff in the delivery of criminal defense services and how their ideologies can undermine defendants' rights. The authors also question the effectiveness of reforms, such as allowing suspects access to legal advice in police stations or legal aid franchising. The book ends with a call for cultural transformation in criminal defense work leading to a reassertion of defendants' rights, and for the setting up of community legal defense centers to coordinate legal education, training, and service delivery.
Law, Criminal-Law, Criminal-Procedure,