The defendant appealed against his conviction, for sex offences some 33 years earlier, saying that the convictions had been unfairly obtained. Evidence had been available since 1980, but a decision not to prosecute had been taken.
Held: ‘the judge’s command of the evidence and the legal issues concerning the evidence with which he had to deal in his summing up was complete. He was fully entitled to expect, if the defence wished any particular disadvantage arising from the delay in prosecution to be drawn to the jury’s attention, that they would be listed for him for his consideration in advance of final speeches. This was not done. . . this was a masterly collection of the evidence and the issues that was calculated to provide the jury with optimum assistance while at the same time being scrupulously fair to the appellant.’ and ‘the judge’s decisions upon the admissibility of evidence and the summing up because a trial of this seriousness well over 30 years after the events which it concerned did, we are satisfied, raise important issues of fairness for consideration. At the conclusion of our examination of the grounds we are left with the firm conviction that the trial was fairly and properly conducted, that the verdicts of the jury were amply justified by the evidence, and that they are safe.’
Pitchford LJ, mitting J, Collier QC J
 EWCA Crim 2398
England and Wales
Cited – Regina v Derby Crown Court, ex parte Brooks QBD 1985
The court set out the characteristics of abuse of process in criminal matters. It may be an abuse of process if: ‘the prosecution have manipulated or misused the process of the court so as to deprive the defendant of a protection provided by the law . .
Cited – Regina v Feltham Magistrate’s Court, ex Parte Ebrahim, Director of Public Prosecutions Admn 21-Feb-2001
The court considered how cases should be handled where video evidence of relevance to a defendant’s case had been destroyed, and the defendant asserted abuse of process.
Held: The discretion to stay proceedings should be employed only in . .
Cited – Regina v Riat and Others CACD 11-Jul-2012
Five defendants appealed against their convictions after the admission of hearsay evidence.
Held: The court re-iterated that the importance of the hearsay evidence to the case remained a vital consideration when deciding upon its . .
Cited – Horncastle and Others, Regina v SC 9-Dec-2009
Each defendant said they had not received a fair trial in that the court had admitted written evidence of a witness he had not been allowed to challenge. The witnesses had been victims, two of whom had died before trial. It was suggested that the . .
Cited – Crown Prosecuting Service v F CACD 21-Jul-2011
The Crown appealed against dismissal of historic sexual abuse charges for delay by the complainant.
Held: The justification for delay is relevant only to the extent that it bears upon the question whether a fair trial is no longer possible by . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Criminal Evidence, Criminal Practice
Updated: 10 November 2021; Ref: scu.519331