Decriminalization  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Decriminalization is the abolition of criminal penalties in relation to certain acts, perhaps retroactively, though perhaps regulated permits or fines might still apply (for contrast, see: Legalization). The reverse process is criminalization.

Decriminalization reflects changing social and moral views. A society may come to the view that an act is not harmful, should no longer be criminalized, or is otherwise not a matter to be addressed by the criminal justice system. Examples of subject matter which have been the subject of changing views on criminality over time in various societies and countries include:

While decriminalized acts are no longer crimes, they may still be the subject of regulation; for example, the licensing and regular medical testing of prostitutes, or a monetary penalty in place of a criminal charge for the possession of a decriminalized drug. This should be contrasted with legalization, which removes all or most legal detriments from a previously illegal act.

Drug-use decriminalisation topics

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Decriminalization" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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