Jun 26, 2007

First Draft of the Constitution, part 10

Chapter V Judicial Power

Article 32 The Courts

(1) The judicial power is vested into the courts.

(2) Judges are appointed by the Sovereign pending the approval of the Assembly. They are independent. Their time in office is determined by legislation or by the terms of this Constitution.

Article 33 The High Tribunal

(1) The High Tribunal is the highest court of the Kingdom and decides issues involving the Constitution of the Kingdom of Edan. In particular, the High Tribunal has jurisdiction over:

(a) Disputes between officers of the government concerning their respective rights and duties under this Constitution

(b) Claims of individuals regarding violations of their constitutional rights that cannot be resolved by a lower court.

(c) Cases on appeal from Royal Courts as the High Tribunal deems necessary to review.

(d) All other cases assigned to its jurisdiction by law.

(2) Decisions of the High Tribunal are directly binding for all entities of the Kingdom.

(3) Cases before the High Tribunal are never heard before a jury; all decisions are solely the decisions of the members of the High Tribunal. This does not change the requirement for open hearings and sentences, nor does it limit the ability of the Sovereign to pardon and commute.

(4) The High Tribunal consists of three members. Members of the High Tribunal must be citizens retaining the right to vote and cannot hold any other position within the government of the Kingdom or its Provinces while serving as a member of the High Tribunal.

(5) Members of the High Tribunal are appointed for a period of 10 years.

(6) The senior judge of the High Tribunal shall be appointed the High Judge by the Sovereign; the High Judge shall preside at all meetings of the High Tribunal as its President and Chairman.

(7) In the event that two or more members of the High Tribunal are equal in seniority, the Sovereign shall appoint one of them High Judge at his pleasure.

(8) A session of the High Tribunal shall last each year from the first Monday in the month of February until the first Friday in the month of November. The High Tribunal shall conduct its business during its sessions.

(9) The period between sessions is to be used to review the decisions of the Royal Courts for the year and to examine potential future cases before the High Tribunal.

(10) The High Judge may declare two periods of recess per session. Such periods of recess shall last one month and must be separated by no less than 2 months.

(11) A member of the High Tribunal may resign his position by a public and written declaration delivered to the Sovereign or to the First Senator if the Sovereign is unavailable.

(12) The Sovereign may remove a member of the High Tribunal for High Treason, Bribery, or non-involuntary Murder.

Article 34 Royal Courts

(1) The courts below the High Tribunal, called the Royal Courts, are created by Royal Decree.

(2) Royal courts have supreme jurisdiction over review and other matters assigned to it by law.

(3) Separate Royal courts shall be established for private law, penal law, and general public law. They shall consist of Provincial Courts, Appellate Courts, and Review Courts for each branch of the Royal Courts.

(4) Any citizen may appeal a ruling of the Royal Courts to the King; the king is free to accept or decline such a request at his pleasure. The King is also free to review the decisions of the Royal Courts at his pleasure.

(5) The King retains the right of High Justice, which allows him to amend, modify, reduce, or nullify a ruling of the Royal Courts or to pardon persons condemned by the Royal Courts.

(6) Decisions of the Review Courts or the King may be appealed to the High Tribunal.

(7) The High Tribunal decides by extraordinary review in cases of inconsistent application of the law by different Royal courts.

(8) Judges of Royal Courts must be removed by the King for Treason, Murder, and Bribery.

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