Source: (2001) Paper presented at the Fourth Asia Pacific World Mediation Forum, held in Adelaide, Australia, 29 November-- 1 December.As Thomas Trenczek comments, mediation is often presented as an alternative to the adversarial court process, yet in fact it generally functions within the "shadow of the law." This is especially true for mediation schemes within a criminal justice context. In Germany, unlike in other countries, mediation is most frequently used in the sphere of criminal justice rather than in the sphere of civil law. Against this background, Trenczek examines victim-offender mediation in the criminal law context in Germany. He argues that the conceptual orientation and application of victim-offender mediation within the German criminal justice system presents certain dangers for both the criminal justice system and for mediation schemes. With this in mind, he focuses in particular on dangers to the implementation of victim-offender mediation in Germany.