Illinois Criminal Code of 1961

Article 1 - Title and Purpose of the Law

In this section of its criminal laws, Illinois explains the primary purposes of its criminal law. In short, the goals are to: prevent crime; define criminal offenses and their punishments in detail; and ensure that individuals accused of crimes are treated fairly. 

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The text below comes from Article 1 of the Illinois Criminal Code of 1961. This law may have changed -- please read the important legal disclaimer at the bottom of this page.

Illinois Criminal Code of 1961 - Article 1

Sec. 1-1. Short title. 
    (720 ILCS 5/1-1)

This Act shall be known and may be cited as the "Criminal Code of 1961".

Sec. 1-2. General purposes. 
    (720 ILCS 5/1-2) 

The provisions of this Code shall be construed in accordance with the general purposes hereof, to:

(a) Forbid and prevent the commission of offenses;

(b) Define adequately the act and mental state which constitute each offense, and limit the condemnation of conduct as criminal when it is without fault;

(c) Prescribe penalties which are proportionate to the seriousness of offenses and which permit recognition of differences in rehabilitation possibilities among individual offenders;

(d) Prevent arbitrary or oppressive treatment of persons accused or convicted of offenses.

   Return to Illinois Criminal Code of 1961 Table of Contents

DISCLAIMER: These excerpts from the law are provided for reference purposes only. Visitors to our Chicago criminal defense lawyer website should be aware that Illinois criminal laws have been amended many times and that Illinois crime laws posted on this site may not be current. In addition, Illinois criminal case law defines precedents for legal determinations that are not defined in the original laws.

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