Juzgados de Primera Instancia Penal

Discussion in 'Legal Terminology' started by sancholibre, Dec 13, 2013.

  1. sancholibre Senior Member

    Mexico City
    US English, learning Mexican Spanish
    Juzgado tercero penal de primera instancia, en México.

    Mi intento: Third District Criminal Court of First Instance

    Que les parece?
     
  2. luigivanilli Senior Member

    Mexico City
    Mexican Spanish
    OJO con District. No se sabe si es local o federal pero por lo que alcanzo a ver seria: Third Criminal Court of First Insatance. Los District son solo federales, así que verifica bien si el jugado es local o federal.
    suerte!
     
  3. Txiri

    Txiri Senior Member

    USA English
    No, they're not. In my state, the state courts are located in each county, and the two levels are District Court and Circuit Court. Also, generally speaking (because there IS so much variance from one state to another, ... [you can even find Napoleonic influences in Louisiana]), we don't widely understand the term "first instance." Instead, many interpreters and translators have decided to use the phrase "Trial Court." This term distinguished the trial courts from appeals courts.
     
  4. David Senior Member

    The observations in post No. 3 are irrelevant. This original refers to the Mexican system, which has both Federal and state courts, not to the US system, which has no significance here. Luigivanilli is entirely correct; as the word "district" does not appear in the original, the proper translation would be Third Criminal Court of First Instance, the proper term for the "trial court" concerned.
     
  5. Txiri

    Txiri Senior Member

    USA English
    Excuse me? No, they're not. If the text is for the eyes of a reader in Mexico only, there is no reason to translate it to another language.
     
  6. David Senior Member

    I disagree entirely.

    A good translation renders faithfully the intention of the author of the original, not relying on invented equivalencies between the institutions of one country and those of another. Reductio ad absurdum: Would you translate "Ministry of Public Enlightenment," as used in a country where propaganda is institutionalized, as "Board of Education" because that is a term used in some Louisiana parish which does not have a "ministry of public enlightenment"? In Panamá, where I live and work, the Circuit Courts are inferior to the Superior courts. Should one change the names and the hierarchy in translation because in the US Federal system the reverse is true? I think not.

    The institutions of state government in the US or other countries that call their principal subdivisions "states" would not make the Third Criminal Court of First Instance in Mexico a "district court" or a "circuit court" or a "surrogate's court" or "any other kind of court, including a tennis court. A US Attorney, often called a "district attorney" in the Federal judicial districts, has both criminal and civil authority. A Mexican "agente del Ministerio Público" has no civil jurisdiction, and is not the equivalent of a "district attorney" in the US Federal system.

    Moreover, I doubt very much that there is any lawyer, judge, paralegal, court clerk or other professional in Louisiana who would fail to understand the meaning of "Court of First Instance." Those in any jurisdiction relying on the Napoleonic Code for legal inspiration would be even less likely to have difficulty in dealing with the term First Instance.
     
  7. Txiri

    Txiri Senior Member

    USA English
    No, I would not translate "Ministry of Public Enlightenment" as "Board of Education." Orwellian metaphors aside, co-optation of language is not in the purview of either courts, or translators.

    Don't be ridiculous.

    Of all the states in the USA, Louisiana in fact IS the most likely to understand "court of first instance." In general terms, we in the other 49 don't use that term here in the US, and I am *not saying* they use it in Louisiana, where their county divisions go by the name of "parishes."

    We speak of "lower courts." Above the "lower courts" we then have "appeals courts" and the ultimate authority, the "supreme court," which is empowered to reverse decisions arising out of appeals or lower courts.

    Individual states use nomenclatures based on each state's code. New York state's criminal lower court is called the "supreme court." The comparable trial division in Arizona is called "superior court." The court of "ultima instancia" in Arizona is The Supreme Court of the State of Arizona. Translating into English does require that one be knowledgeable about, and take into account, the target language's use of the term.

    Federal courts in the USA are "district courts", "appeals courts" (which are organized in "Circuits") and the "Supreme Court." No tennis courts involved.

    Note: appeals opinions, written by judges, often refer to the lower court as the "trial court."

    Congratulations on the wit. I appreciate good wit. Most people who translate legal documents aren't doing it for the exercise of expanding their minds, for "self-improvement," which seems to have gone the way of Victorian morality. They translate for pay. If translating for a readership, bear in mind what the readership will understand, use explanatory footnotes if you must. And remember that translation is an art, not a science, and the translator is a link between the people who don't understand the two languages as well as he does, and he (or she) therefore has an obligation to serve both the reader and the author.
     
  8. David Senior Member

    Again, what is the relevance of all of this to a translation of the names of the courts of Sinaloa, México? I see none.
     
  9. luigivanilli Senior Member

    Mexico City
    Mexican Spanish
    Interesting discussion, colleages. Back to the initial concern; if you are to make sure the reader will understand the type of court we are talking about, my comment was that using 'District' in the target langauage is misleading, because it will send his/her mind to the Federal system courts, rather than State courts which apparently is the point here.

    ¡Suerte!
     
  10. luigivanilli Senior Member

    Mexico City
    Mexican Spanish
    Interesting discussion, colleages. Back to the initial concern; if you are to make sure the reader will understand the type of court we are talking about, my comment was that using 'District' in the target langauage is misleading, because it will send his/her mind to the Federal system courts, rather than State courts which apparently is the point here.
     
  11. David Senior Member

    Bingo! Luigivanilli provides a perfect example of why the use of tortured, false equivalencies such as those recommended in posts 5 and 7 below, is not recommended in the translation of legal documents. If the court in Sinaloa is a "Criminal Court of First Instance," that is what it should be called in English.
     

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