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date: 20 September 2021

p. 424. The substantive reach of court-martial jurisdictionlocked

p. 424. The substantive reach of court-martial jurisdictionlocked

  • Eugene R. Fidell


If a court-martial has jurisdiction over an accused, to what offenses does that jurisdiction extend? Military justice codes take a variety of approaches to defining what conduct will be prosecuted in courts-martial. Typically, they set forth and give the required elements of a number of offenses. Some offenses—disobedience and disrespect, desertion, dereliction of duty, AWOL, missing movement, mutiny, oppressing a subordinate, or hazarding a vessel—have no counterpart in civilian criminal law. ‘The substantive reach of court-martial jurisdiction’ outlines two key issues: whether human rights violations should be prosecuted in courts-martial, and whether common law or ordinary crimes should ever be tried by court-martial rather than in the civilian courts.

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