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The American criminal jury system has a long, ancient history. It went through several stages throughout history until it became a sophisticated institution for educating the American people about the law in their country. Jury duty is one of the privileges of U.S. citizenship. This thesis shows how the criminal justice system currently works in the United States. This paper discusses issues such as the hung jury, the capital jury, checking abuses of power, and jury nullification. This thesis focuses on other countries that have recently adopted the criminal jury system, such as Spain and Russia, after they adopted democracy. This paper shows how the criminal justice system works in Iraq and which of the stages in the criminal system to which the jury system could apply.

Finally, this thesis will explore the possibility of adopting the jury criminal system and its likelihood of success in Iraq. There are many important reasons to justify the adoption of the criminal jury in the Iraqi criminal justice system. First, the democracy which Iraq adopted recently gives the country a great opportunity to grant citizens more rights and get them more involved in public life, especially the judicial part of government. Second, there is evidence from Islam which suggests that the criminal jury system can be successfully applied in Islamic countries adopting shariah law as a source of legislation. Third, the corruption that Iraq faces is a serious issue today and is as risky to the future of the country as terrorism. If the common citizen was involved in the judicial system, this would hopefully make it less corrupt.


This thesis submitted to the graduate faculty, LL.M. program of Valparaiso University Law School in U.S.A, as a requirement for the Master of Law degree in Criminal Law.