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Lay Judges in Rostov Province

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Chapter Summary

A legal system cannot function effectively without the respect of its citizens. The main focus of the lay assessor study was on how citizens had experienced being drafted into the courts for a short period of time. Their vote as lay assessors had the same weight de iure as the vote of the professional judge. People's assessors gained first-hand experience in the courts. They saw how citizens were treated and how the judges dealt with themselves as part-time judges. How did people's assessors evaluate the qualities of Russian courts and Russian law? These topics are addressed on the basis of social science theories. It turns out that Russian lay assessors measured their courts and national law by similar criteria as e.g., German lay assessors. The justice of verdicts and the fairness of proceedings turned out to be of great importance for lay assessors.

Keywords: German lay assessors; legal system; Russian Courts; Russian law; Russian lay assessors



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