Criminal Law, as distinguished from civil legislation, is a method of legislation concerned with punishment of individuals who commit crimes. Therefore, where at a civil case two people dispute their rights, a criminal prosecution involves the public as a complete determining whether to punish an individual because of his behavior or lack of conduct (i.e. omission). As the folks decide what conduct to punish, so the people decide what punishment is appropriate. Thus, punishments vary with the severity of the offense from a very simple fine (e.g. for a traffic violation) to loss of freedom.
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