Print version ISSN 1517-4522
AZEVEDO, Rodrigo Ghiringhelli de. Crime and criminal justice in Latin America.Translated byRoberto Cataldo Costa. Sociologias [online]. 2006, vol.2Selected edition, pp. 0-0. ISSN 1517-4522.
After a presentation of indicators that allow assessing the degree of democratization of the criminal justice system in the context of democratization process in Latin America, this article points out the discrepancy existing in that domain, in the several instances that make up the justice system, from criminal legislation to the prison system. Examining the specific situation of Brazil and Argentina, problems in the functioning of institutions responsible by crime as well as the increase in crime control are pointed out as factors that cause a growing loss of legitimacy for the system, which is unable to justify its high degree of selectivity and authoritarianism. Some efforts under way to approach that phenomenon are listed. Finally, a few alternatives for institutional improvement are presented, among which the action of social scientists by producing research and analyses, as a crucial instrument to enlarge institutional ability to deal with current social conflict on democratic bases.
Keywords : Criminal justice; Democracy; Crime; Social control; Criminal policy.