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Plea Bargaining and the Law Discussion

A trial by jury is included in 3 of the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution. Constitutional
rights (e.g., 6th amendment right to a fair trial by jury and 5th amendment right against selfincrimination), adversarial system and procedural safeguards (e.g., burden of proof, cross-exam,
presentation of evidence), guide and protect defendants’ rights during the trial process. There is
no mention of plea bargaining in the Constitution; rather, plea bargaining developed out of
custom, and has been upheld by the Supreme Court.
Consider the following in your original post:
1. Are plea bargains an effective way to “prosecute” the law?
2. What are the benefits and drawbacks of plea bargaining?
3. Consider the implications of plea bargaining for defendants, legal actors (i.e., defense
attorneys, prosecutors, and judges), victims, and society.