Section 33 and Schedule 6: Offences
263.This section gives effect to Schedule 6 which sets out offences relating to jurors, witnesses and evidence, and the penalties for these offences.
264.Offences relating to jurors include service on a jury by those who know they are disqualified from such service, failure to attend a coroner’s jury and making false representations to avoid jury service. These offences reflect those jury-related offences in section 9 of the 1988 Act.
265.The offences relating to witnesses include failure to comply with a notice under paragraph 1 of Schedule 5, altering evidence, preventing evidence from being given, destroying or concealing documents, and giving false evidence. These offences are new, as the senior coroner is given the power to compel evidence in these provisions.
266.The Act does not remove or alter the powers of a senior coroner under the common law to summon witnesses, require evidence to be given and punish for contempt of court.