The Dementor’s kiss administered to Barty Crouch Jr. is a nice plot trick that allows JKR to have the Ministry defame Dumbledore, Harry and anyone else claiming that Voldemort is back during “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”.

On the other side it is completely illogical action from the Ministry. A Dementor’s kiss is practically a death sentence and it is very unlikely that such is issued (and executed) in the time frame given in the book - about one day. Despite the tragic events, there was no direct evidence that Barty Crouch Jr. had something to do with the death of Cedric Diggory.

It would be more logical to have a trial with judges and serious investigation of the events etc. but this does not happen.

Even if this was some kind of "blitz action" by Fudge, the it would cost him the seat on the next days - just imagine a prime minister in a democratic country (which the magical community seems to be) ordering the execution of anyone without any trial or evidence.

  • 2
    Since it didn't cost him his position, your argument is invalid :-)
    – Valorum
    Commented May 9, 2015 at 20:18
  • I’m going by memory alone here, and I don’t recall where in the book it is, but at some point in Prisoner of Azkaban, it is said that the Ministry has authorised the Dementors to perform the Kiss on Sirius with no trial because he is, as they believed, a Death Eater escaped from Azkaban and highly dangerous. The same is true of Crouch Jr, though Fudge doesn’t know it until at the very end. It seems likely, though speculative, that the Kiss permission was really about Azkaban escapees, rather than Sirius personally, and Fudge used that to his advantage. Commented May 9, 2015 at 20:52
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    Magical community is not a democratic country. They don’t have elections, there is only one newspaper which is under total control of government, they are infiltrating to somewhat free educational system, you can not object to minister publicly. You can buy your freedom through money and status( malfoys) Commented Feb 5, 2018 at 18:46

5 Answers 5


It was done in "defense" of Fudge. So it got through.

They even didn't mean to have Crouch Jr. get kissed in the first place, but since Fudge was idiotic enough to have a Dementor as a body guard for his "protection", Crouch Jr. got kissed and in Fudge's eyes this was as a means of protection for himself.

When in reality it was just the Dementor acting as it's meant to act, especially with regards to escaped prisoners from Azkaban.

I suppose, that this also got covered up somehow since what a disaster would it be that a death eater got into Hogwarts as a professor (again) under the watch of Albus Dumbledore. And that a professor was held captive in a trunk for months.

I think it'll give Hogwarts a pretty bad rep don't you think? Might even get Dumbledore sacked.

But since the London wizarding world is the London wizarding world, and with idiotic ministers like Fudge getting into position and with the hero-worship Dumbledore was getting from wizards, it's highly probable that Dumbledore stretched out his influence and swayed the opinion of Britain's wizarding masses. At least this is my opinion on the matter, this wasn't really covered by the books or the movies. It just transitioned to the fifth book if you'll remember.

What people are going on about at the start of fifth book was how Dumbledore and Harry are mad for thinking Voldemort alive.

So it's also probable that people don't even want to believe that a death eater got into Hogwarts, as it would mean that said death eater has a purpose, which leads back to Voldemort's rise. And let's chalk it up to the Ministry covering it up. Actually I think that's what actually happened. The ministry most likely covered the whole thing up since it'll reflect badly on them. Corrupted minister is corrupted.

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    It was not initiated by the ministry, but by the Dementor itself, as with return of Voldemort, the ministry control over Dementors started to fail.
    – TimSparrow
    Commented Mar 29, 2017 at 10:18
  • Who was the other death eater who got into Hogwarts as a professor? Snape? Commented Feb 5, 2018 at 23:36

They didn't order it; Fudge brought the dementors to protect him, and they Kissed Crouch of their own accord. Possibly, they recognized him as an escapee.


They didn’t - Fudge brought a Dementor and passed it off as accident.

When Fudge heard that they’d captured the one responsible for what happened at the Third Task, Fudge was insistent that he have a Dementor to guard him, supposedly to ensure his personal safety around a dangerous prisoner.

“When we told Mr Fudge that we had caught the Death Eater responsible for tonight’s events,’ said Snape, in a low voice, ‘he seemed to feel his personal safety was in question. He insisted on summoning a Dementor to accompany him into the castle. He brought it up to the office where Barty Crouch –”
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 36 (The Parting of the Ways)

Once the Dementor got into the room with Barty Crouch Jr. it sucked out his soul, supposedly approved of by no one, acting on its own accord.

“The moment that – that thing entered the room,’ she screamed, pointing at Fudge, trembling all over, ‘it swooped down on Crouch and – and –’

Harry felt a chill in his stomach, as Professor McGonagall struggled to find words to describe what had happened. He did not need her to finish her sentence. He knew what the Dementor must have done. It had administered its fatal kiss to Barty Crouch. It had sucked his soul out through his mouth. He was worse than dead.”
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 36 (The Parting of the Ways)

However, it may have actually been acting on orders. Dumbledore seemed very much to suspect Fudge had actually intended that to happen - Barty Crouch Jr. was dead, and he could continue on covering up the return of the Dark Lord.

“By all accounts, he is no loss!’ blustered Fudge. ‘It seems he has been responsible for several deaths!’

‘But he cannot now give testimony, Cornelius,’ said Dumbledore. He was staring hard at Fudge, as though seeing him plainly for the first time. ‘He cannot give evidence about why he killed those people.”
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 36 (The Parting of the Ways)

The decision was never made by the Ministry as an organization, or officially, by Fudge either. However, it seems very likely that Fudge wanted the Dementor to suck out Crouch's soul and gave the order himself. However, Fudge had the excuse that the Dementor acted on its own, which he could have told the Ministry, and anyone else, should they question him.


He already had a trial where he was convicted of being a Death Eater and/or the torture of Frank and Alice Longbottom (Neville's parents)

Breaking out of Azkaban seems to be a 'kiss-worthy' offence, so from Fudge's point of view (scary), there was no need for another trial

The aforementioned trial takes place in the Pensieve scene in Goblet of Fire (Chapter 30)

  • Is there any evidence that he'd been trialled in advance?
    – Edlothiad
    Commented Feb 5, 2018 at 16:33
  • @Edlothiad He had been put on trial and convicted of previous offenses. I don't think you would put someone on trial for escaping from prison.
    – TGnat
    Commented Feb 5, 2018 at 22:04

I think it's more likely that the Death Eaters who had infiltrated the Ministry ordered this, in order to keep Voldemort's return secret. Voldy didn't want the public to know he was back at this point, while he gathered his forces. The Dementors were always more loyal to Dark Wizards, so it would be easy for the Death Eaters at the Ministry to get one to do it.

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    They managed to order and execute this from the Ministry, in less than an hour, at night, just on the off chance that Crouch had been found out? That seems extremely unlikely. It also wouldn't do anything to keep Voldemort’s return from the public—Harry’s survival had already squandered that with almost certainty. Commented May 9, 2015 at 21:57

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