Expert evidence

Expert evidence is used to provide information to the court, which is likely to be outside of the knowledge of the magistrates, judge or jury. Opinion evidence can be given if the expert is qualified to provide such an opinion. Duty of an expert witness An expert is under a duty to help the court

Covid 19 Lockdown – the law

Covid 19 Lockdown – the law The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020 imposes several restrictions. Over the last week, the police have been keen to enforce compliance, even calling out the MP Stephen Kinnock over social media for visiting his father on his birthday. Given the importance of protecting the NHS, it is

Trial Delays

A defendant has the right to a fair trial within a reasonable time. In exceptional cases, a delay will lead to a stay of proceedings as an abuse of process. A stay of proceedings is an extremely rare outcome, with the Court of Appeal making the following observation in R v PS [2013] EWCA Crim

Intermediaries

The use of intermediaries during criminal trials is becoming increasingly commonplace. An intermediary may be used to assist any witness, including a defendant, give evidence. The functions of an intermediary “Intermediaries are communication specialists (not supporters or expert witnesses) whose role is to facilitate communication between the witness and the court, including the advocates. Intermediaries

Criminal Justice and Coronavirus

As the UK prepares to move into the ‘delay phase’, changes are expected to criminal justice procedure. So, what might be expected to change? Criminal Investigations In the event of any public disorder, work on low priority criminal investigations may slow or stall entirely as police resources are diverted elsewhere. Most police custody suites hold

Circumstantial Evidence

Circumstantial evidence is widely misunderstood, and many people cannot understand how a case can be advanced without primary evidence of wrongdoing. To illustrate this, we can use two examples relating to burglary. Burglary can be committed in quite a few different ways, but the most common allegation is that a person entered a building as

Forensic evidence

The Forensic Science Regulator regulates forensic scientists in England and Wales. The Regulator ensures that the provision of forensic science evidence across the criminal justice system is subject to appropriate standards. The Regulator has recently said that there are gaps in quality that need to be resolved in order to prevent the use of unreliable