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Explanatory Memorandum to Criminal Justice (Evidence) (Northern Ireland) Order 2004

Interpretation of Part II

Part III:  Hearsay Evidence

33.Article 17defines terms employed in this Part of the Order.

Paragraph (2) makes it clear that where the defendant is charged with 2 or more offences the provisions of this Part refer to each Part as separate proceedings.   This means that bad character evidence that is admissible in relation to one charge in the proceedings is not automatically admissible in relation to another charge in the same proceedings.

Paragraph (3) makes it clear that nothing in this Part affects the exclusion of evidence on certain other grounds.  These are:

  • The rule in section 3 of the Criminal Procedure Act 1865 against a party impeaching the credit of his own witness by general evidence of bad character;

  • Under Article 28 of the Criminal Evidence (Northern Ireland) Order 1999 which places restrictions on evidence or questions about the complainant’s sexual history; and

  • On grounds other than the fact that it is evidence of a person’s bad character.

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