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Eritrean Customary Laws: 'Old-Modern' Treasures for Introducing an Effective Sentencing Regime – the "Just Desert" System

Habteab Y. Ogubazghi, Senai W. Andemariam


Modern criminal justice has often been criticized for the lack of uniformity in sentencing caused principally by the lack of easily identifiable categorization of offences by the degree of their severity and wide range in the sentences set for offences. The 'Just Desert' sentencing system has recently been favored as a workable solution. It is acclaimed to guarantee the establishment of fair, proportional, uniform, predictable and efficient criminal justice system. The authors identified elements of just desert in the Eritrean customary laws that just desert can be a sentencing choice fitting to the values and norms of the Eritrean people. This article will show why and how incorporating the just desert in the Eritrean customary laws can transform Eritrea's criminal law and possibly serve as a model for other countries.

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