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The Criminal Justice (Evidence) (Northern Ireland) Order 2004

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This is the original version (as it was originally made).

Preservation of certain common law rules in relation to hearsay

This section has no associated Explanatory Memorandum

22.—(1) The following rules of law are preserved.

Public information, etc.

(1) Any rule of law under which in criminal proceedings—

(a)published works dealing with matters of a public nature (such as histories, scientific works, dictionaries and maps) are admissible as evidence of facts of a public nature stated in them,

(b)public documents (such as public registers, and returns made under public authority with respect to matters of public interest) are admissible as evidence of facts stated in them,

(c)records (such as the records of certain courts, treaties, Crown grants, pardons and commissions) are admissible as evidence of facts stated in them, or

(d)evidence relating to a person’s age or date or place of birth may be given by a person without personal knowledge of the matter.

Reputation as to character

(2) Any rule of law under which in criminal proceedings evidence of a person’s reputation is admissible for the purpose of proving his good or bad character.

Note

The rule is preserved only so far as it allows the court to treat such evidence as proving the matter concerned.

Reputation or family tradition

(3) Any rule of law under which in criminal proceedings evidence of reputation or family tradition is admissible for the purpose of proving or disproving—

(a)pedigree or the existence of a marriage,

(b)the existence of any public or general right, or

(c)the identity of any person or thing.

Note

The rule is preserved only so far as it allows the court to treat such evidence as proving or disproving the matter concerned.

Res gestae

(4) Any rule of law under which in criminal proceedings a statement is admissible as evidence of any matter stated if—

(a)the statement was made by a person so emotionally overpowered by an event that the possibility of concoction or distortion can be disregarded,

(b)the statement accompanied an act which can be properly evaluated as evidence only if considered in conjunction with the statement, or

(c)the statement relates to a physical sensation or a mental state (such as intention or emotion).

Confessions, etc.

(5) Any rule of law relating to the admissibility of confessions or mixed statements in criminal proceedings.

Admissions by agents, etc.

(6) Any rule of law under which in criminal proceedings—

(a)an admission made by an agent of a defendant is admissible against the defendant as evidence of any matter stated, or

(b)a statement made by a person to whom a defendant refers a person for information is admissible against the defendant as evidence of any matter stated.

Common enterprise

(7) Any rule of law under which in criminal proceedings a statement made by a party to a common enterprise is admissible against another party to the enterprise as evidence of any matter stated.

Expert evidence

(8) Any rule of law under which in criminal proceedings an expert witness may draw on the body of expertise relevant to his field.

(2) With the exception of the rules preserved by this Article, the common law rules governing the admissibility of hearsay evidence in criminal proceedings are abolished.

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