Blankietowość norm prawnokarnych jako problem konstytucyjny
Blanket criminal provisions as a constitutional issue – summary
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The article aims to answer the question whether and if yes, then under what conditions blanket criminal provisions meet constitutional requirement of definiteness of an offense. This question is one of the most important legal issues that arises at the level of relations between the criminal law and the constitutional law. The rulings of the Polish Constitutional Tribunal relating to this issue show a far-reaching evolution. This evolution has proceeded from the thesis on an absolute prohibition of referrals in the criminal law towards the thesis on conditional permission of using blanket provisions in the criminal law. In the currently established judgments the Tribunal has stated that, from perspective of the constitutional principle of definiteness of an offense, blanket provisions are admissible if they meet the so-called foreseeability test. This test is met if the addressee of a criminal provision is able to determine – merely from the wording of the provision – main elements of the offense. It is worth noting that the Tribunal accepts both the partially blanket provisions and in exceptional situations the fully blanket provisions. The direction of changes in the judgments indicates a definitely needed prag matism in balancing between the protective and the guarantee functions of the criminal law.
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