Criminal Law


Penal law or Criminal law as usually referred as in Pakistan is the bodies of rules with the potential for severe impositions as punishment for failure to comply. Criminal punishment, depending on the offense and jurisdiction, may include execution, loss of liberty, government supervision (parole or probation), or fines. There are some archetypal crimes, like murder, but the acts that are forbidden are not wholly consistent between different criminal codes, and even within a particular code lines may be blurred as civil infractions may give rise also to criminal consequences. Criminal law typically is enforced by the government, unlike the civil law, which may be enforced by private parties.  


Criminal law is distinctive for the uniquely serious potential consequences or sanctions for failure to abide by its rules. Every crime is composed of criminal elements. Capital punishment may be imposed in Pakistan for the most serious crimes. Physical or corporal punishments were imposed such as whipping or caning in martial law period in Pakistan, although these punishments are prohibited under democratic governments normally. Government    

Crime in Pakistan



supervision may be imposed, including house arrest, and convicts may be required to conform to particularized guidelines as part of a parole or probation regimen. Fines also may be imposed, seizing money or property from a person convicted of a crime.   

Widely accepted objectives by the courts in Pakistan for enforcement of the criminal law include:   

  • Retribution – Criminal law in Pakistan should be used to make Criminals suffer in some way.
  • Deterrence – Criminal law in Pakistan should be provide Individual deterrence toward the specific offender.
  • Incapacitation – Criminal law in Pakistan should be Designed simply to keep criminals away from society so that the public is protected from their misconduct.  
  • Rehabilitation – A Criminal law in Pakistan should be aimed at transforming an offender into a valuable member of society.
  • Restitution – Criminal law in Pakistan should be also provide for compensation to victim and/or victim representatives.


Pakistan gained independence from india in 1947, although the prevalent law introduced by the british was as it is imposed in Pakistan. Criminal law prevailing in Pakistan these days is also the same over 60 years later with minor amendments. Code of Criminal Procedure (V of 1898) that was implemented in colony is still largely the prescribed criminal procedure followed by the courts in Pakistan. Similarly the Penal Code (XLV of 1860), later named as Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) is predominant law on crimes in Pakistan.   

Code of Criminal Procedure (V of 1898) Of Pakistan deals in defining all the offences and mentioning their punishments along, you may say this statute defines the procedure as evident from its name, while the Pakistan Penal Code forms the material portion of criminal law in Pakistan. Apart from these codes, criminal liability may attracted under other statutes like, Negotiable Instruments Act which attracts criminal liability in case of dishonoured cheque, although new provision of section 489-F has also been added in Pakistan Penal Code, regarding dishonestly issuing a cheque. Therefore any criminal case will be primarily tried under the foregoing legislation in Pakistan.   

Supreme Court of Pakistan is the apex court of appeal in Pakistan, appeals may be made up to this level, however, President of Pakistan is empowered by legislation to annull the conviction.   


The criminal law generally prohibits undesirable acts. Thus, proof of a crime requires proof of some act. Scholars label this the requirement of an actus reus or guilty act. Because of the potentially severe consequences of criminal conviction, judges at common law also sought proof of an intent to do some bad thing, the mens rea or guilty mind. As to crimes of which both actus reus and mens rea are requirements, judges have concluded that the elements must be present at precisely the same moment and it is not enough that they occurred sequentially at different times.   


A murder, defined broadly, is an unlawful killing. Unlawful killing is probably the act most frequently targeted by the criminal law. In Pakistan, the crime of murder is divided into various gradations of severity, e.g., murder in the first degree, based on intent. Malice is a required element of murder. Manslaughter is a lesser variety of killing committed in the absence of malice, brought about by reasonable provocation, or diminished capacity. Involuntary manslaughter, where it is recognized, is a killing that lacks all but the most attenuated guilty intent, recklessness.   

Masood & Masood is the combination of the finest criminal law lawyers in Pakistan. The Law firm has deep insight into the criminal justice system applicable in Pakistan, enabling us to guide our clients at every stage of the case. We can guide you in the following:  


  • Initiation of Criminal Proceedings in Pakistan: The law is set into motion with a complaint to the concerned police station, resulting in registration of a criminal case in the shape of a First Information Report (FIR). In case of delay in the same we may assist you in seeking Court order for registration of a criminal case in the event the police, for some reason or another.
  •  Private Criminal Complaints in Pakistan: The Law firm has enormous experience in scenarios where Local Police was not communicating well and we resorted to private prosecution.
  • Harassment Petitions: Criminal intimidation, threats and harassment activities are treated as serious offences under Pakistani Law, which is  a right guaranteed under the Constitution of Pakistan. 
  •  Bail Matters: Importance of getting bailed out in a criminal matter is the primary concern whether it be Pre-arrest, post arrest, anticipatory bails or else. 
  •  Trials :Adopting the right course of action, coupled with a planned and well thought-out strategy, plays a pivotal role behind every successful trial.
  • Appeals :Lawyers/Attorneys at our law firm are committed to aggressive and prompt appeal in case of negative orders. 
  • Criminal Investigation in Pakistan
  • Private Investigation in Pakistan

In case you have a criminal matter and are thinking of engaging a prominent and reliable attorney/lawyer you know Masood And Masood is the place to go.   

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