The prosecutor had a alleged a conspiracy basing the charge on a conversation in a car. The court rejected the admisibility of evidence of a voice recognition expert, and the defendant was acquitted on direction. He then said that in the absence of a conviction on that count, the case against him on the other counts fell. The judge found that he was not entitled to lead that he was to be presumed not to have been in the car only because those present in the car were involved in a conspiracy of which he had been acquitted.
Held: The case of Hay was inconsistent with R v Z, where the test was said to be relevance, not conclusiveness. An acquittal was not conclusive evidence of innocence save in the restricted sense of innocence at law. R v Z could not be limited to similar fact evidence. A direction based on R v Hay might be artificial and unsatisfactory. The judge had been correct and no unfairness followed.
Auld LJ, Owen J, Hedley J
Times 28-Dec-2004,  2 Crim App R 7
England and Wales
Cited – Regina v Z (Prior acquittal) HL 22-Jun-2000
The defendant on a charge of rape had been tried and acquitted of the rape of different women on three previous occasions in three separate trials. The prosecution wished to call those three complainants to give similar fact evidence in support of . .
Cited – Sambasivam v Director of Public Prosecutions, Federation of Malaya PC 1950
(Malaya) The effect of a verdict of acquittal pronounced by a competent court after a lawful trial is not restricted to the fact that the person acquitted cannot be tried again for the same offence. It is binding and conclusive in all subsequent . .
Cited – Regina v Ollis CCCR 1900
The defendant had obtained a sum of money by giving a worthless cheque. He was indicted for having obtained the money by false pretences. His defence was that when he gave the cheque he expected a payment into his bank account in time to meet the . .
Cited – Regina v Hay CACD 1983
The court considered the effect of a prior acquittal when the Crown on a subsequent prosecution sought to rely on part of a confession, the other part of which the earlier jury had not accepted. . .
Cited – Regina v Robinson CACD 23-Mar-2011
Earlier Acquittal not for mention on retrial
The defendant appealed against several convictions for serious ‘historic’ sex abuse. He said that there was insufficient evidence before the court to decide that the complainant had been under 14 at the time, and that any consent was vitiated. He . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 06 May 2022; Ref: scu.221709