Double Jeopardy

Double jeopardy is a rule that is found in the fifth amendment of the constitution of the United States of America. It simply means that a person can not be tried for the same case twice. The rule is imposed upon the state and federal courts by through the Due Process clause. This rule prohibits trying a defendant a second time for the same trial. The rule limits the authorities from abusing the defendants through repeated prosecution on the same offence.

The protection accorded to defendants by this rule are: being tried twice and more than one prosecution on one offense In the case of Swenson v Ashen of 1970 it was ruled that when a matter has been decided and final judgment delivered, the same can not be used by either of the parties in litigation of future cases. If the prosecuting side found some evidence where an acquitted person can be proved guilty of an offence there is nothing that can be done since the defendant can not be tried again on the same charge.

(Newborn, T2007) There are cases where a defendant would not quote double jeopardy as a defense. There are exceptions as far as this rule is concerned. When an earlier trial is proven to be a fraud or involving a scam this rule does not apply. For example in a situation where the defendant bribed a judge to rule on his or her favor. Another situation where this rule is not violated is where a retrial is ordered subsequent to conviction being overturned on appeal, this due to the fact that case has been invalidated.

In both of these situations the cases before are not entirely thrown out the evidence and testimonies can be used in the retrials. (Bernhard, William1996) Some cases which are thrown out due to the lack of enough evidence in some cases constitute a final ruling but the constitution allows for some degree of chances for the prosecution to appeal. References Newborn, T (2007) Crimology, Willan Publishing Bernhard, William (1996) Double Jeopardy, Ballentine Books