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(  13  )

 
 

(3)   

If—

 

(a)   

a jury is required to determine under section 4A(2) of the

 

Criminal Procedure (Insanity) Act 1964 (c. 84) whether a

 

person charged on an indictment with an offence did the act

 

or made the omission charged,

 

(b)   

evidence of the person’s bad character has been admitted

 

with leave under section 82B, and

 

(c)   

the court is satisfied at any time after the close of the case for

 

the prosecution that—

 

(i)   

the evidence is contaminated, and

 

(ii)   

the contamination is such that, considering the

 

importance of the evidence to the case against the

 

person, a finding that he did the act or made the

 

omission would be unsafe,

 

   

the court must either direct the jury to acquit the defendant

 

of the offence or, if it considers that there ought to be a

 

rehearing, discharge the jury.

 

(4)   

This section does not prejudice any other power a court may have

 

to direct a jury to acquit a person of an offence or to discharge a jury.

 

(5)   

For the purposes of this section, a person’s evidence is

 

contaminated where—

 

(a)   

as a result of an agreement or understanding between the

 

person and one or more others, or

 

(b)   

as a result of the person being aware of anything alleged by

 

one or more others who are, or could be, witnesses in the

 

proceedings,

 

   

the evidence is false or misleading in any respect, or is different

 

from what it would otherwise have been.

 

82N     

Assumption of truth in assessment of probative value

 

(1)   

Subject to subsection (2), a reference in this Act to the probative

 

value of evidence is a reference to its probative value on the

 

assumption that it is true.

 

(2)   

In assessing the probative value of an item of evidence for any

 

purpose of this Act, a court need not assume that the evidence is

 

true if it appears, on the basis of any material before the court

 

(including any evidence it decides to hear on the matter), that no

 

court or jury could reasonably find it to be true.

 

82O     

Court’s duty to give reasons for rulings

 

(1)   

Where the court makes a relevant ruling—

 

(a)   

it must state in open court (but in the absence of the jury, if

 

there is one) its reasons for the ruling;

 

(b)   

if it is a magistrates’ court, it must cause the ruling and the

 

reasons for it to be entered in the register of the court’s

 

proceedings.


 

(  14  )

 
 

(2)   

In this section “relevant ruling” means—

 

(a)   

a ruling on whether an item of evidence is admissible only

 

with leave under section 82B;

 

(b)   

a decision whether to give leave under that section;

 

(c)   

a ruling under section 82M.

 

82P     

Rules of court

 

(1)   

Rules of court may make such provision as appears to the

 

appropriate authority to be necessary or expedient for the purposes

 

of this Act; and the appropriate authority is the authority entitled to

 

make the rules.

 

(2)   

The rules may require a party who—

 

(a)   

proposes to adduce evidence of a defendant’s bad character

 

that is admissible only with leave under section 82B, or

 

(b)   

proposes to cross-examine a witness with a view to eliciting

 

such evidence,

 

   

to serve on the defendant such notice, and such particulars of or

 

relating to the evidence, as may be prescribed.

 

(3)   

The rules may provide that the court or the defendant may, in such

 

circumstances as may be prescribed, dispense with a requirement

 

imposed by virtue of subsection (2).

 

(4)   

If a party fails to comply with a requirement that has been imposed

 

in relation to an item of evidence by virtue of subsection (2) (and not

 

dispensed with by virtue of subsection (3)) the court may take the

 

failure into account—

 

(a)   

in deciding whether to grant leave under section 82B; and

 

(b)   

where leave is given, in considering the exercise of its

 

powers with respect to costs.

 

(5)   

The rules may—

 

(a)   

limit the application of any provision of the rules to

 

prescribed circumstances;

 

(b)   

subject any provision of the rules to prescribed exceptions;

 

and

 

(c)   

make different provision for different cases or

 

circumstances.

 

(6)   

Nothing in this section prejudices the generality of any enactment

 

conferring power to make rules of court; and no particular

 

provision of this section prejudices any general provision of it.

 

(7)   

In this section—

 

   

“prescribed” means prescribed by rules of court;

 

   

“rules of court” means—

 

(a)   

Crown Court Rules;

 

(b)   

Criminal Appeal Rules; and

 

(c)   

rules under section 144 of the Magistrates’ Courts

 

Act 1980 (c. 43).


 

(  15  )

 
 

82Q        Interpretation

 

(1)   

In this Chapter—

 

   

“bad character” is to be read in accordance with section 82A;

 

   

“criminal proceedings” means criminal proceedings in

 

relation to which the strict rules of evidence apply;

 

   

“defendant” in relation to criminal proceedings, means a

 

person charged with an offence in those proceedings; and

 

“co-defendant”, in relation to a defendant, means a person

 

charged with an offence in the same proceedings;

 

   

“misconduct” means—

 

(a)   

the commission of an offence, or

 

(b)   

behaviour of a kind that, in the opinion of the court,

 

might be viewed with disapproval by a reasonable

 

person;

 

   

“prejudice”, in relation to an item of evidence and a defendant,

 

is to be read in accordance with subsection (2);

 

   

“probative value” is to be read in accordance with section 82N;

 

   

“prosecution evidence” means evidence which is to be (or has

 

been) adduced by the prosecution, or which a witness is to

 

be invited to give (or has given) in cross-examination by the

 

prosecution.

 

(2)   

For the purposes of this Act, evidence carries a risk of prejudice to

 

a defendant where—

 

(a)   

there is a risk that the court or jury would attach undue

 

weight to the evidence, or

 

(b)   

the nature of the matters with which the evidence deals is

 

such as to give rise to a risk that the court or jury would find

 

the defendant guilty without being satisfied that he was.

 

(3)   

Where a defendant is charged with two or more offences in the

 

same criminal proceedings, this Act has effect as if each offence

 

were charged in separate proceedings; and references to the offence

 

with which the defendant is charged are to be read accordingly.

 

82R Minor and consequential amendments

 

(1)   

In section 6 of the Criminal Procedure Act 1865 (c. 18) (witness’s

 

conviction for offence may be proved if not admitted)—

 

(a)   

for “A witness may be” substitute “If, upon a witness being

 

lawfully”;

 

(b)   

omit “and upon being so questioned, if”.

 

(2)   

In section 1(2) of the Criminal Evidence Act 1898 (c. 36) (restriction

 

of privilege against self-incrimination where defendant gives

 

evidence) at the beginning insert “Subject to section 6 of the

 

Criminal Evidence Act 2001 (inadmissibility of evidence of

 

defendant’s bad character)”.

 

(3)   

In section 16(2) of the Children and Young Persons Act 1963 (c. 37)

 

(offences committed by person under 14 disregarded for purposes

 

of evidence relating to previous convictions) for the words from

 

“notwithstanding” to the end substitute “even though the Criminal


 

(  16  )

 
 

Justice and Police Act 2001 (c. 16) would not prevent the question

 

from being asked”.

 

82S     

Repeals

 

(1)   

The common law rules governing the admissibility of evidence of

 

bad character in criminal proceedings are abolished.

 

(2)   

The rules referred to in subsection (1) include any rule under which,

 

as an exception to the inadmissibility of hearsay evidence, evidence

 

of a person’s reputation is admissible for the purpose of proving his

 

character, but only so far as the rule relates to evidence of bad

 

character.

 

(3)   

The following cease to have effect—

 

(a)   

section 1(3) of the Criminal Evidence Act 1898 (c. 36) (which

 

makes provision as to the questions that a defendant may be

 

asked about his bad character in cross-examination);

 

(b)   

section 27(3) of the Theft Act 1968 (c. 60) (admission of

 

evidence of previous convictions for theft etc to prove that

 

defendant knew goods to be stolen).””

 

The Commons disagree to this Amendment for the following Reason

114A

Because they would result in a less satisfactory scheme for dealing with evidence of bad

 

character.

Clause 90

LORDS AMENDMENT NO. 115

Leave out Clause 90

 

The Commons disagree to this Amendment but propose the following Amendment to the

 

words so restored to the Bill

115A

Page 60, line 37, leave out from beginning to “evidence” in line 2 on page 61 and

 

insert—

 

   

“References in this Chapter to evidence of a person’s “bad character” are to

 

evidence of, or of a disposition towards, misconduct on his part, other

 

than”

Clause 91

LORDS AMENDMENT NO. 116

Leave out Clause 91

 

The Commons disagree to this Amendment for the following Reason

116A

Because they would result in a less satisfactory scheme for dealing with evidence of bad

 

character.


 
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