Criminal law is an independent fundamental legal branch and also an integral part of legal system of the State. It enters the complex of branches of the criminal cycle alongside criminal-procedural law and criminal-executive law. Basic provisions of criminal policy of the State are fixed in its institutes and norms.
In all higher educational institutions of juridical profile criminal law is among the major educational disciplines. Its purpose consists in giving to learners the necessary information on that, for what it is necessary to punish the person who has committed any deed. In other words, it is on cognition of one of the important activities of law-enforcement bodies, its limits and order.
As an educational discipline (subject of cognition) criminal law aims at training professional lawyers, whose main function is a reasonable and well-timed enforcement, without which combating against crimes loses its dynamism.
The course of criminal law has three main purposes:
General educational value of this subject is associated with the need of improving the overall culture of students — future lawyers. Jurisprudential purpose of the course consists in deepening the theoretical knowledge about concept, methods, systems, tasks and principles of criminal law; criminal statute; concept and types of crimes; corpus delicti and its elements; criminal responsibility; stages of committing a crime; сomplicity in a crime; multiplicity of crimes and its forms; circumstances excluding the criminality of a deed; purposes and types of punishments; imposition of punishment; release from criminal responsibility and punishment; criminal responsibility of juveniles and other measures of penal nature. Practical role of the course related to the study of institutes and methods of penal regulation, their positive and negative aspects, which may vary in different conditions: positive features may have negative consequences, and vice versa. Knowledge of criminal law theory and practice may help to improve the criminal law regulation with account for specific conditions.
The proposed textbook of criminal law is an important contribution to legal science of Azerbaijan. So, for several years in the law faculties of higher educational institutions of Azerbaijan operate the English sectors. Nevertheless, the textbook on criminal law, which is considered one of the most important legal branches, has not been published in English yet. It, in turn, creates difficulty both for the students studying in English, and for the teachers. The need for publication of considered book derives from the interests of the educational process, and also from the changes occurring in the criminal law policy of the Azerbaijan Republic and in legal thinking of society. It is also necessary to note, that the proposed textbook represents the first textbook, written in English in the history of legal science of Azerbaijan.
The structure of the considered work corresponds to the Criminal Сode of the Azerbaijan Republic which is adopted in 1999. For fifteen years after its adoption, significant changes and amendments, which reflect the cardinal changes occurring in the spheres of politics, economics and law, the realization of provisions of the Constitution of the Azerbaijan Republic, especially regarding the protection of the rights and freedom of man and priority of universal human values have been amended to it. All these confirm the dynamic improvement of the criminal legislation of the Azerbaijan Republic, aimed at the development of political, economic and social life of the country. This book covers all amendments made to the Criminal Code, that will allow readers to penetrate more deeply into problems of criminal legislation and criminal jurisprudence, including the characteristics of the evolution of criminal law views and debatable questions.
Materials of the textbook are represented in nine sections. Each section is a block of criminal law, which reflects its essence as an independent legal branch.
The first section relates to the conceptual apparatus, method, sources and constitutional bases of the criminal law policy of the Azerbaijan Republic, because for those who study criminal law understanding its conceptual foundations laid by law doctrine and the Constitution of the Azerbaijan Republic is important.
The second section of the book is devoted to the most important, key institution of criminal law — to corpus delicti. Without deep insight of its essence it is impossible to acquire the criminal law. Study of corpus delicti has great importance for strict observance of legality.
The third section defines features of stages of committing a crime and сomplicity in a crime, the fourth — multiplicity of crimes, the fifth — circumstances excluding the criminality of a deed, the sixth — punishment and its imposition, the seventh — release from criminal responsibility and punishment, the eighth — criminal responsibility of juveniles, the ninth — other measures of penal nature.
Work is written on the basis of the Course of lectures on “General part of criminal law”, delivered by us in 2000—2014 years in “Law Faculty” and “Faculty of international law and international relations” of Baku State University. Materials of the book are based on scientific and pedagogical researches and practical experiences of criminal law problems. It aims at generalizing results of development of the norms of different legislative branches relating to criminal law regulation, for further use in law-enforcement activities. The performed analysis is intended for better awareness and explanation of the needs for intensification of development of criminal law issues in a new sociao-legal context.
The proposed textbook will make sound base for comprehensive study of criminal law and its instruction in higher juridical institutions. This book is very useful also for employees of law-enforcement bodies and courts, because application of any legal norm requires, first of all, existence of juridical knowledge. Employees of law-enforcement bodies and courts should understand all responsibility for future decisions on the application of law and should know criminal law perfectly well, because poor knowledge of this subject may lead to violation of legality.
It is also necessary to note, that this textbook may be an important source of knowledge in foreign countries for scientific researches in terms of comparative jurisprudence.
The author hopes that this publication will be both interesting and useful to the attentive reader.
Criminal law is an independent fundamental legal branch and also an integral part of legal system of the State. It enters the complex of branches of the criminal cycle alongside criminal-procedural