Definition of Criminal Procedure Law: Its Functions, Objectives, and Principles

 Definition of criminal procedural law – Indonesia is a rule of law country. Then in court there will also be such a thing as procedural law. Maybe so far we only know the term law or  rule of law , but we don’t really understand whether there is a term procedural law or not.

The simple definition of procedural law is a set of rules that are always binding and govern the course of trials to be carried out in the judiciary. Be it courts of first instance, civil courts and state administrative courts.

In procedural law there is such a thing as criminal procedural law. In general, it can be said that criminal procedural law is an arrangement or procedure for how the state and intermediary means of power use their power to impose a sentence, so that it contains criminal procedure.

To add to your insight into criminal procedural law, here are some definitions from a number of experts regarding the meaning of criminal procedural law and its functions, objectives and principles. Come on Readers , listen to the explanation!

Definition of Criminal Procedure Law

Criminal procedural law is often referred to as formal criminal law, while criminal law is referred to as material law. The material criminal law or criminal law contains instructions and descriptions of offenses, regulations regarding the conditions for an act to be punished, instructions regarding a person who can be punished and rules regarding punishment, which regulates to whom and how the punishment can be imposed, while the formal procedural law regulates how the state through its means exercise its right to convict and impose a sentence.

The definition of Criminal Procedure Law is not clearly defined in the Criminal Procedure Code. Law Number 8 of 1981 concerning the Criminal Procedure Code only provides understandings regarding parts of the criminal procedure law, such as investigations, investigations, arrests, legal proceedings, confiscations, searches and others.

Criminal procedural law are rules that can provide an indication of what law enforcers and other parties involved in it should do if there is a suspicion that the criminal law has been violated.

To find out more about the meaning of Criminal Procedure Law, below are several definitions according to the views of experts, including:

1. According to Wirjono Prodjodikoro

According to Wirjono Prodjodikoro, former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, criminal procedural law is closely related to the existence of criminal law and is a series of regulations that contain the ways in which the government agencies in power, namely the police, prosecutors and courts act in order to achieve the goals of the State by promulgating criminal law.


2. According to Eddy OS Hiariej

According to Eddy OS Hiariej, in essence, the Criminal Procedure Code contains rules governing the application or procedure, including rules of inquiry, investigation, prosecution, pretrial interrogation, court decisions, legal remedies and enforcement of court decisions or decisions.

Therefore, the notion of criminal procedural law can be understood as law that regulates procedural principles in all criminal justice processes, starting from the level of investigation, prosecutors, prosecutions, and courts, to making court decisions, corrective actions, and implementing court decisions or decisions in efforts to seek and find material truth.

KUHAP, as stipulated in the Criminal Procedure Code Law No. 8 of 1981, in essence does not provide a standard interpretation of the law. However, according to Eddy OS Hiariej, the Criminal Procedure Code has procedures or trials for violators of criminal law. This statement is absolutely true.

In fact, someone who commits an act of violation of criminal law (substantive criminal law) does not only end with his actions, but also has legal processes and procedures that must be followed by the perpetrators of these criminal acts. These processes and procedures are known as KUHAP. Thus, criminal procedural law is passive, it will not work if there was no previous criminal law violation.

Criminal procedural law, in particular a set of legal provisions that regulate the state against alleged criminal acts and seeking the truth through its tools by being examined in court and decided by judges through the execution of decisions.

3. According to Van Apeldoorn

Criminal procedural law, especially the regulations governing how the government can maintain continuity in enforcing substantive criminal law.

4. According to Bambang Poernomo

In a narrow sense, criminal procedural law is a set of regulations relating to the implementation of criminal procedural law, and in a broad sense, it is a set of regulations that apply criminal procedural law along with other legal provisions, other related regulations. In a very broad sense, hand in hand with provisions regarding alternative types of punishment.

5. According to Simon

The task of criminal procedural law is to regulate how the state with its equipment uses its authority to punish crimes and impose sentences.

6. According to Van Bemmelen

Meanwhile, according to Van Bemmelen quoted by Andi Hamzah, the definition of criminal procedural law is the study of regulations made by the state, as a result of alleged violations of criminal law, including:

  1. The state through its tools investigates the truth.
  2. If possible, investigate the culprit.
  3. Take the necessary measures to arrest the producer and, if necessary, detain him.
  4. Collecting evidence (material fees) obtained during the examination of truth to be submitted to the judge and presenting the defendant before the judge.
  5. The judge decides whether the alleged acts are proven and, for that, sentences or orders action.
  6. Legal efforts to challenge the decision.
  7. Finally, the implementation of criminal and administrative decisions
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Based on the definitions above, the authors conclude that the meaning given by Van Bemmelen can be considered more complete and precise because in this sense it also details the substitution of criminal law when referring to the investigative stage, the investigative stage, the prosecution stage up to entering the court process, so not only beginning and end.

The definition of criminal procedural law put forward by the experts above basically has the same meaning as the notion of criminal procedural law, namely provisions regarding the procedure for administering criminal justice where the body of the criminal procedural law is the wider community, not the general public in a broad sense. law enforcers in it

It is important that the rules of criminal procedural law refer not only to law enforcement officials, but also to the parties or other people involved, either directly or indirectly.

Functions of Criminal Procedure Law

Every man-made legal norm always has a specific function and purpose, the function of criminal law or criminal procedural law is to implement substantive criminal law, namely to regulate how the state uses its tools to exercise its authority to punish or acquit.

According to Bambang Poernomo, the duties and functions of criminal procedural law through its devices are:

1) Seek and find the truth according to the truth.

2) Applying the law with decisions based on justice.

3) Enforce decisions fairly.

According to Djisman Samosir , the function of the criminal procedural law is to guide the police in carrying out the functions of inquiry, investigation, arrest and detention, as well as making minutes of interrogation, to guide the prosecutor’s office in making detentions, preparing indictments and prosecutions.

A handbook for judges to carry out interrogations and decision making, even advice for legal advisers in carrying out their defense functions. Thus, the function of criminal procedural law is very important because it regulates the protection of the dignity of the accused and suspects, as well as regulates the rights and obligations of law enforcers.

According to R. Abdoel Djamali , procedural law or formal law functions to resolve problems that meet the criteria of substantive law through a process based on the rules contained in procedural law. This means that procedural law only works when there are problems faced by individuals. This matter must be dealt with fairly to get to the truth.

According to Van Bemmelen in his book “Leerboek van het Nederlandse Strafprocesrecht” , which was quoted by Rd. Achmad S. Soemadipradja, argues that criminal procedural law essentially regulates matters:

  1. Investigate the truth of alleged violations of criminal procedural law, through a State specially designed for that.
  2. Enforcement efforts against the perpetrators.
  3. Every effort will be made so that the perpetrators of this act can be caught and if necessary detained.
  4. The evidence obtained and collected from the results of the examination of the truth of the allegations has been submitted to the judge, and processed so that the suspect can be brought before the judge.
  5. Let the judge decide whether the suspect can prove the actions he is accused of and what actions or punishments will be taken or imposed in the past. 6. Identify means of appeal that can be used against the judge’s decision.
  6. The final decision is the crime or action to be taken.

Thus, based on the questions above, it can be concluded that the three main functions of criminal procedural law are:

  1. Search and find the truth.
  2. The decision is made by the judge.
  3. Carry out the decisions made.

Likewise, according to Rd. Achmad S. Soema Dipradja, criminal procedural law includes “establishing rules by which investigators and ultimately judges can attempt to penetrate to find the truth about the acts committed by people who are suspected of having committed them”.

Purpose of Criminal Procedure Law

The emergence of new legal discoveries and the formation of new laws and regulations, especially since the New Order government, is quite encouraging and has become a glimmer of hope in legal life in Indonesia, including the development of the Criminal Procedure Code. If one looks at the several considerations that became the reason for the development of the Criminal Procedure Code, in summary the Criminal Procedure Code has five objectives as follows:

  1. Protection of dignity (suspects and accused).
  2. Protect the interests of law and government.
  3. KUHAP codification and unity.
  4. Achieve consistency of attitudes and actions of law enforcement.
  5. Carry out criminal procedural law according to Pancasila and the 1945 Constitution.

In the Guidelines for the Implementation of the Criminal Procedure Code, the objectives of the criminal procedural law have been formulated, namely

“Finding and obtaining or at least accessing material truth, namely upholding the truth of criminal cases as a whole by applying the provisions of the criminal procedure law honestly and appropriately to identify defendants who are suspected of committing crimes in accordance with the provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code, thereby requesting the court to consider and decide whether a crime can be proven or not. the crime was committed and whether the accused is to blame.”

If you look at the wording above, the purpose of criminal procedural law can be detailed as follows.

  1. Material truth is the essential and complete truth of a criminal case due to the correct and honest application of the provisions of the criminal procedural law.
  2. Identification of legal subjects based on credible evidence, to be able to prosecute you for committing a crime.
  3. Explaining review and court decision, to be able to determine whether it can be proven that the defendant committed a crime.
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The purpose of criminal procedural law as referred to in the Criminal Procedure Code is explained as follows:

“The purpose of criminal procedure law is to find and obtain or at least approach the truth as high as possible from a criminal case by applying the provisions of criminal procedure law in an impartial and honest manner for the purpose of finding out who may be accused of committing criminal act, violates the law, then requests the court to review it and decide whether there is evidence of a crime and whether the accused can be prosecuted”.

crime namely:

  1. Seek and tell the truth.
  2. Giving a decision by a judge.
  3. Implementation of decisions.

Of these three goals, the most important because it forms the basis of the last two, is the search for truth. The function of tracing and finding the truth is according to the provisions of Article 183 of the Criminal Procedure Code, the purpose of criminal procedural law is to find out the nature of a thing, is it appropriate or not? “approaching material truth” or even more “at least approaching material truth”.

After knowing the facts obtained from the evidence and evidence, the judge will make a decision (fair and correct) which will then be implemented by the prosecutor. The achievement of order, tranquility, peace, justice and social welfare.

Principles of Criminal Procedure Law

To achieve the goal of protecting the nobility of human dignity, the principles of law enforcement are formulated in Law Number 48 of 2009 concerning the main provisions of justice which are reaffirmed in the Criminal Procedure Code to enliven each article or paragraph so that it always reflects the protection of human rights. These principles are:

1. The principle of fast, simple and low-cost trials

This is stated in Article 2(4) of the Law on Justice No. 48 of 2009 which states that: “Justice is done simply, quickly and at a lower cost.” “Simple” here means that the examination and settlement of cases is carried out effectively and efficiently. “Low cost” means that the costs of a case can be borne by the general public.

10 The term “fast” itself means “immediately”. In particular, a speedy trial is needed to avoid long periods of detention before a judge’s decision is taken, which cannot be separated from the implementation of human rights. Likewise with a free, fair and impartial trial for all parties, as confirmed by law. 11 However, in practice, this principle is difficult to achieve. Here is an example case:

Generally, people who have cases in court are legally blind, so they often leave their cases to lawyers to handle everything related to their case in court. If this happens, the court costs are not cheap, so the principle of “low cost” will not be achieved.

2. The principle of in praesentia

Basically, the court examines the defendant before the judge, but under certain conditions and considerations, the court may examine the defendant without the defendant present (in absentia).

3. The principle of open court hearings for the public

This principle states that in essence the public can visit the court. This means that the public can follow every trial process so that the judge’s decision can be accounted for. It also ensures the ability to reach an agreement between the troubled parties.

However, in some cases or circumstances, trials may be declared closed to the public. Cases examined on camera involve questions about morality or events the children are accused of.

4. The principle of equality before the law

The law provides guarantees and certainty regarding the rights and obligations of citizens. The law also cannot distinguish between rich and poor citizens, powerful or not, but in the eyes of the law, all citizens have the same rights.

Therefore, the symbol of justice is the goddess with closed eyes. That is, a goddess must judge without having to consider the plight of the troubled citizens. Likewise, a judge may not discriminate between people.

In paragraph 1 of Article 5 of the Law on the Principles of Justice No. 4 of 2004 stated that “The court judges according to law without discriminating against people”.

5. The Principle of Supervision

Public interrogation in court is of an actuator nature, meaning that the defendant occupies a position of “taking sides” parallel to the opposing party, namely the Public Prosecutor. It is as if the two sides are “arguing” before a judge, who will decide the “dispute” later. The Prosecutor’s Office here is to oversee the implementation of Court decisions in criminal cases.

The court’s expertise is to consider and screen whether the crime is true or not, whether the evidence presented is valid or not, and whether the terms and conditions of the Criminal Code are in accordance with the words of the crime or not.

Pre-trial examination is open to the public, unless otherwise stipulated in the provisions, for example in the case of an examination of ethical violations, etc.


This is a review of the meaning of criminal procedural law along with its functions, objectives and principles.