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Encyclopedia > Parliamentary immunity

Parliamentary immunity is a system in which members of the parliament are granted partial immunity from prosecution. Before prosecuting, it is necessary that the immunity be removed, usually by a superior court of Justice, or the parliament itself. This reduces the possibility of pressing a member of the parliament to change his vote by fear of prosecution. An aerial view of Parliament of India at New Delhi. ... Immunity confers a status on a person or body that makes that person or body free from otherwise legal obligations such as, for example, liability for damages or punishment for criminal acts. ... Criminal law (also known as penal law) is the body of law that regulates governmental sanctions (such as imprisonment and/or fines) as retaliation for crimes against the social order. ... A court is an official, public forum which a public power establishes by lawful authority to adjudicate disputes, and to dispense civil, labour, administrative and criminal justice under the law. ...

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Westminster system countries

Legislators in countries using the Westminster system, such as the United Kingdom, are also protected from civil action for slander and libel by their parliamentary immunity whilst they are in the House. See parliamentary privilege. The Westminster System is a democratic system of government modeled after that of the United Kingdom system, as used in the Palace of Westminster, the location of the UK parliament. ... Civil law has at least three meanings. ... In English and American law, and systems based on them, libel and slander are two forms of defamation (or defamation of character), which is the tort or delict of making a false statement that negatively affects someones reputation. ... Parliamentary privilege is a legal mechanism employed within the legislative bodies of countries whose constitutions are based on the Westminster system. ...


In the run-up to the 2006 election in Canada, Conservative Party leader Steven Harper denounced the ruling Liberal Party on the floor of the House of Commons, contending that the government ran "a massive corruption ring using organized crime to defraud taxpayers." Although the Liberal Party has threatened to sue Harper if he repeats his allegation during the campaign, parliamentary immunity prevents them from legal action against his statements in the Commons. The Hon. ...


France

Members of the Parliament of France enjoy irresponsibility for what they did as parliamentarians, and partial inviolability – that is, severe restrictions for the police or justice to arrest or detain them. These dispositions are somewhat controversial, following abuse of such privileges. The Parlement of France is bicameral, and consists of the National Assembly (Assemblée Nationale) and the Senate (Sénat). ... Allegory of Justice as woman with sword and with book - statue at court building. ...


Irresponsibility

Members of the Parliament may not be sought, prosecuted, judged or imprisoned for actions that they have accomplished within their duties of parliamentarians. In particular, parliamentarians are immune to prosecution for defamation for such actions. This includes speeches and votes in public sittings of the assemblies, law proposals, amendments, as well as reports and other actions commissionned by parliamentary instances. This, according to the jurisprudence, does not include interviews on broadcast radio, nor does it include reports commissioned by the executive branch – since such actions are not specific to the duties of a parliamentarian. In English and American law, and systems based on them, libel and slander are two forms of defamation (or defamation of character), which is the tort or delict of making a false statement of fact that injures someones reputation. ... Jurisprudence is the scientific study of law through a philosophical lens. ...


For interventions in public sitting, members of parliament are however still subject to the disciplinary rules of their assembly.


There is no way to lift this irresponsibility clause, and the parliamentarian himself or herself cannot renounce it. The termination of the parliamentary term does not allow the prosecution of former parliamentarians for actions committed within their parliamentarian duties.


Inviolability

While members of parliament are not criminally responsible for their actions as parliamentarians, they are, however, responsible for their actions as private citizens. There are, however, strong limitations as to their prosecution.


Members of parliament may be arrested or otherwise deprived of their freedom, or face restrictions thereof, only with the permission of the desk of their assembly. This authorization is not needed in case of a flagrant felony (e.g. the parliamentarian was caught red-handed) or in case of a definitive condemnation by a court of law (Constitution of France, art. 26). The assembly of which the parliamentarian is a member may oppose any such measure for the duration of the parliamentary session. The current Constitution of France was adopted on October 4, 1958, and has been amended 17 times, most recently on March 28, 2003. ...


Requests for the arrest or detention of a parliamentarian are issued by the general prosecutor of the competent Court of Appeal, sent to the Minister of Justice, who transmits them to the Desk of the relevant assembly. The Desk examines the requests and rules on it; its ruling is published in the Journal Officiel. Court of Appeals is the title of certain appellate courts in various jurisdictions. ... The French Minister of Justice (Ministre de la Justice) is an important cabinet official in the Government of France. ... The Journal Officiel de la République Française (JORF or JO) is the official gazette of the French Republic. ...


Controversy

The topic of parliamentarian immunity is somewhat controversial in France, especially in the context of scandals of corruption or graft involving politicians. Many resent such a mechanism, in which some influential members of society enjoy special rights and are not made accountable for their own actions. In horticulture, a graft is where the tissues of one plant are affixed to the tissues of another; the process is called grafting. ...


In 2004, Charles Pasqua was voted in as a senator by conservative electors of the Paris region (the Senate is elected by an electoral college). This was denounced by critics, including the Canard Enchaîné, as a way to prevent Pasqua from being prosecuted for various alleged crimes of corruption and misuse of public funds. See corruption scandals in the Paris region. 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Charles Pasqua (born April 18, French businessman and politician. ... The Senate (in French : le Sénat) is the upper house of the Parliament of France. ... An elector can be: In the Holy Roman Empire of German Nation, the collegiate of seven Electors (eight since 1648) (Kurfürsten) consisted of those lay or clerical princes who had the right to vote in the election of the king or Holy Roman Emperor; see prince-elector. ... An electoral college is a set of electors who are empowered as a deliberative body to elect someone to a particular office. ... Le Canard enchaîné is a satirical newspaper published weekly in France, founded in 1915, featuring investigative journalism and leaks from sources inside the French government, the French political world and the French business world, as well as a large number of jokes and humoristic cartoons. ... In the 1980s and 1990s there were in the Paris region (Île-de-France) multiple instances of alleged and proved political corruption cases, as well as cases of abuse of public money and resources. ...


Likewise, in early 2005, the idea was suggested that former Presidents of the Republic should become senators-for-life, instead of being able to sit in the Constitutional Council. Ostensibly, this idea was a means to solve the problem of such former presidents as Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, who may not have kept to the strict duty of political neutrality in their speech expected from members of the Council. This, however, was criticized as a way to provide Jacques Chirac with immunity for related scandals. 2005 (MMV) is a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The President of France, known officially as the President of the Republic (Président de la République in French), is Frances elected Head of State. ... A republican guard giving directions to visitors at the front entrance of the Constitutional Council The Constitutional Council (Conseil Constitutionnel) was established by the Constitution of the Fifth Republic on 4 October 1958. ... Valéry Marie René Georges Giscard dEstaing (born February 2, 1926 in Koblenz, Germany) is a French politician who was President of the Republic from 1974 until 1981. ... Jacques René Chirac â–¶(?), (born November 29, 1932 in Paris) is a French politician who is currently President of the French Republic. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Immunity (legal) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (410 words)
Judicial immunity, which finds its origin in sovereign immunity, is the absolute immunity of a judge or magistrate from any kind of civil liability for an act performed in the judge's official capacity, i.e.
Parliamentary immunity is granted to elected government officials during their official acts in parliament, congress or other public deliberative organ of government.
Such immunity is seen to be a means to the free discussion of ideas, when it is abused there may be ways to surmount such immunity, see for example the biography of Jürgen Möllemann.
Parliamentary immunity - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (658 words)
Parliamentary immunity is a system in which members of the parliament are granted partial immunity from prosecution.
Before prosecuting, it is necessary that the immunity be removed, usually by a superior court of Justice, or the parliament itself.
The topic of parliamentarian immunity is somewhat controversial in France, especially in the context of scandals of corruption or graft involving politicians.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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