Search Legislation

Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995

 Help about what version

What Version

 Help about advanced features

Advanced Features

More Resources

Changes over time for: Cross Heading: Proof of previous convictions

 Help about opening options

Version Superseded: 01/04/2013

Status:

Point in time view as at 01/02/2005.

Changes to legislation:

Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995, Cross Heading: Proof of previous convictions is up to date with all changes known to be in force on or before 20 September 2019. There are changes that may be brought into force at a future date. Changes that have been made appear in the content and are referenced with annotations. Help about Changes to Legislation

Close

Changes to Legislation

Changes and effects yet to be applied by the editorial team are only applicable when viewing the latest version or prospective version of legislation. They are therefore not accessible when viewing legislation as at a specific point in time. To view the ‘Changes to Legislation’ information for this provision return to the latest version view using the options provided in the ‘What Version’ box above.

Proof of previous convictionsS

285 Previous convictions: proof, general.S

(1)A previous conviction may be proved against any person in any criminal proceedings by the production of such evidence of the conviction as is mentioned in this subsection and subsections (2) to (6) below and by showing that his fingerprints and those of the person convicted are the fingerprints of the same person.

(2)A certificate purporting to be signed by [F1the Secretary of State or by a person authorised by him to sign such a certificate]or the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis, containing particulars relating to a conviction extracted from the criminal records kept [F1in pursuance of a service provided and maintained by the Secretary of State under or by virtue of section 36 of the M1Police (Scotland) Act 1967 or by or on behalf of the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis], and certifying that the copies of the fingerprints contained in the certificate are copies of the fingerprints appearing from the said records to have been taken in pursuance of rules for the time being in force under sections 12 and 39 of the M2Prisons (Scotland) Act 1989, or regulations for the time being in force under section 16 of the M3Prison Act 1952, from the person convicted on the occasion of the conviction or on the occasion of his last conviction, shall be sufficient evidence of the conviction or, as the case may be, of his last conviction and of all preceding convictions and that the copies of the fingerprints produced on the certificate are copies of the fingerprints of the person convicted.

(3)Where a person has been apprehended and detained in the custody of the police in connection with any criminal proceedings, a certificate purporting to be signed by the chief constable concerned or a person authorised on his behalf, certifying that the fingerprints produced thereon were taken from him while he was so detained, shall be sufficient evidence in those proceedings that the fingerprints produced on the certificate are the fingerprints of that person.

(4)A certificate purporting to be signed by or on behalf of the governor of a prison or of a remand centre in which any person has been detained in connection with any criminal proceedings, certifying that the fingerprints produced thereon were taken from him while he was so detained, shall be sufficient evidence in those proceedings that the fingerprints produced on the certificate are the fingerprints of that person.

(5)A certificate purporting to be signed by [F2the Secretary of State or by a person authorised by him to sign such a certificate], and certifying that the fingerprints, copies of which are certified as mentioned in subsection (2) above by [F2the Secretary of State or by a person authorised by him to sign such a certificate or by or on behalf of] or the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis to be copies of the fingerprints of a person previously convicted and the fingerprints certified by or on behalf of a chief constable or a governor as mentioned in subsection (3) or (4) above, or otherwise shown, to be the fingerprints of the person against whom the previous conviction is sought to be proved, are the fingerprints of the same person, shall be sufficient evidence of the matter so certified.

(6)An extract conviction of any crime committed in any part of the United Kingdom bearing to have been issued by an officer whose duties include the issue of extract convictions shall be received in evidence without being sworn to by witnesses.

(7)It shall be competent to prove a previous conviction or any fact relevant to the admissibility of the conviction by witnesses, although the name of any such witness is not included in the list served on the accused; and the accused shall be entitled to examine witnesses with regard to such conviction or fact.

(8)An official of any prison in which the accused has been detained on such conviction shall be a competent and sufficient witness to prove its application to the accused, although he may not have been present in court at the trial to which such conviction relates.

(9)The method of proving a previous conviction authorised by this section shall be in addition to any other method of proving the conviction.

[F3(10)In this section “fingerprint” includes any record of the skin of a person’s finger created by a device approved by the Secretary of State under section 18(7B) of this Act.]

Textual Amendments

F1Words in s. 285(2) substituted (1.8.1997) by 1997 c. 48, s. 59(2)(a)(b); S.I. 1997/1712, art. 3, Sch. (subject to arts. 4, 5)

F2Words in s. 285(5) substituted (1.8.1997) by 1997 c. 48, s. 59(3)(a)(b); S.I. 1997/1712, art. 3, Sch. (subject to arts. 4, 5)

F3S. 285(10) inserted (1.8.1997) by 1997 c. 48, s. 47(5); S.I. 1997/1712, art. 3, Sch. (subject to arts. 4, 5)

Marginal Citations

286 Previous convictions: proof in support of substantive charge.S

(1)Without prejudice to section 285(6) to (9) or, as the case may be, section 166 of this Act, where proof of a previous conviction is competent in support of a substantive charge, any such conviction or an extract of it shall, if—

(a)it purports to relate to the accused and to be signed by the clerk of court having custody of the record containing the conviction; and

(b)a copy of it has been served on the accused not less than 14 days before the [F4relevant] diet,

be sufficient evidence of the application of the conviction to the accused unless, within seven days of the date of service of the copy on him, he serves notice on the prosecutor that he denies that it applies to him.

[F5(1A)In subsection (1)(b) above, “the relevant diet” means—

(a)in the case of proceedings in the High Court, the preliminary hearing;

(b)in any other case, the trial diet.]

(2)A copy of a conviction or extract conviction served under subsection (1) above shall be served on the accused in such manner as may be prescribed by Act of Adjournal, and a written execution purporting to be signed by the person who served the copy together with, where appropriate, the relevant post office receipt shall be sufficient evidence of service of the copy.

[F6(3)The reference in subsection (1)(a) above to “the clerk of court having custody of the record containing the conviction” includes, in relation to a previous conviction by a court in another member State of the European Union, a reference to any officer of that court or of that State having such custody.]

[F7286AProof of previous conviction by court in other member StateS

(1)A previous conviction by a court in another member State of the European Union may be proved against any person in any criminal proceedings by the production of evidence of the conviction and by showing that his fingerprints and those of the person convicted are the fingerprints of the same person.

(2)A certificate—

(a)bearing—

(i)to have been sealed with the official seal of a Minister of the State in question; and

(ii)to contain particulars relating to a conviction extracted from the criminal records of that State; and

(b)including copies of fingerprints and certifying that those copies—

(i)are of fingerprints appearing from those records to have been taken from the person convicted on the occasion of the conviction, or on the occasion of his last conviction; and

(ii)would be admissible in evidence in criminal proceedings in that State as a record of the skin of that person’s fingers,

shall be sufficient evidence of the conviction or, as the case may be, of the person’s last conviction and of all preceding convictions and that the copies of the fingerprints included in the certificate are copies of the fingerprints of the person convicted.

(3)A conviction bearing to have been—

(a)extracted from the criminal records of the State in question; and

(b)issued by an officer of that State whose duties include the issuing of such extracts,

shall be received in evidence without being sworn to by witnesses.

(4)Subsection (9) of section 285 of this Act applies in relation to this section as it does in relation to that section.]

Textual Amendments

Back to top

Options/Help

Print Options

You have chosen to open The Whole Act

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open The Whole Act as a PDF

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open The Whole Act without Schedules

The Whole Act without Schedules you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open The Whole Act without Schedules as a PDF

The Whole Act without Schedules you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open the Whole Act

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open the Whole Act without Schedules

The Whole Act without Schedules you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

Close

Legislation is available in different versions:

Latest Available (revised):The latest available updated version of the legislation incorporating changes made by subsequent legislation and applied by our editorial team. Changes we have not yet applied to the text, can be found in the ‘Changes to Legislation’ area.

Original (As Enacted or Made): The original version of the legislation as it stood when it was enacted or made. No changes have been applied to the text.

Point in Time: This becomes available after navigating to view revised legislation as it stood at a certain point in time via Advanced Features > Show Timeline of Changes or via a point in time advanced search.

Close

See additional information alongside the content

Geographical Extent: Indicates the geographical area that this provision applies to. For further information see ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

Show Timeline of Changes: See how this legislation has or could change over time. Turning this feature on will show extra navigation options to go to these specific points in time. Return to the latest available version by using the controls above in the What Version box.

Close

Opening Options

Different options to open legislation in order to view more content on screen at once

Close

More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources
Close

Timeline of Changes

This timeline shows the different points in time where a change occurred. The dates will coincide with the earliest date on which the change (e.g an insertion, a repeal or a substitution) that was applied came into force. The first date in the timeline will usually be the earliest date when the provision came into force. In some cases the first date is 01/02/1991 (or for Northern Ireland legislation 01/01/2006). This date is our basedate. No versions before this date are available. For further information see the Editorial Practice Guide and Glossary under Help.