Les indices en procédure pénale

Abstract : Once taking the form of a "sign of divinity" in the trial by ordeal, the clue would henceforth designate any "event, object or trace" that might forge the judge's conviction. The characteristics of the clue can thus be recognized by its ability to make the desired result possible. In this sense, the clue cannot – today as in the past – directly indicate guilt, although it has always been able to allow for the presumption that the prohibited fact is imputable to suspects. The effects of the clue have always been sought after, without anyone ever being able to explain them. The clue makes possible, has specific power and fits perfectly into the dialectical reasoning inherent in the legal field.Lawyers use clue-based presumptions to compensate for the deficiencies inherent in criminal evidence. Undeniably, the clue occupies a central place in the probationary process. Nevertheless, a finding of deficiency is inevitable: the reasons why the clue produces this effect, which is so characteristic and therefore so common, are never explained. Undoubtedly too prosaic, the clue has vanished into the background of criminal evidence that has become preponderant because of the seriousness of the legal consequences it justifies. A sharper look this time would nevertheless have foreshadowed the universal importance of such a notion: since time immemorial, the clue has been the foundation of proof. As the foundations of a fragmented reality that the justice system wishes to reconstruct, the clues mark out the procedural path until evidence is obtained. The various phases of criminal proceedings are organised according to the rhythm of the interpreted clues, as much as they forge a conviction about the conduct of the prohibited acts. The intimate conviction in fact anchors the interpretation of the clue at the heart of the criminal evidence and, with it, the perfectibility of a human construction at the centre of criminal procedure.
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Vincent Mermoz. Les indices en procédure pénale. Droit. Université Paris-Saclay, 2019. Français. ⟨NNT : 2019SACLS094⟩. ⟨tel-02161918⟩

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