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Coroners and Justice Act 2009

Section 106:  Directions to attend through live link

516.Subsection (2) amends section 57B of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998, which makes provision for courts to give live link directions for preliminary hearings where the defendant is in custody. The effect of the provision is to enable a single justice of the peace to give or rescind such a direction, thus obviating the need to convene a full court for that purpose.

517.Subsection (3) amends section 57C of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 by removing the requirement for the defendant’s consent to the use of a live link for a preliminary hearing in a magistrates’ court where the defendant is at the police station, whether detained there in connection with the offence or having returned to answer live link bail (subsection (3)(b)). It also adds a requirement for the court to be satisfied that a live link direction would not be contrary to the interests of justice (subsection (3)(a)) and removes the ability of a court to rescind a live link direction before the hearing (subsection (3)(c)).

518.Subsection (4) amends section 57D of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 by removing the requirement for a defendant’s consent to be sentenced by live link where he or she has pleaded guilty at a live link preliminary hearing. The subsection adds a requirement for the court to be satisfied that the defendant continuing to attend through the live link would not be contrary to the interests of justice. The separate requirement for the defendant’s consent if he or she is to give oral evidence at this kind of live link sentencing hearing is also removed.

519.Subsection (5) amends section 57E of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 by removing the need for the defendant’s consent for a live link sentencing hearing where he or she has previously been convicted of the offence and is in custody. The separate requirement for the defendant’s consent if he or she is to give oral evidence at this kind of live link sentencing hearing is also removed.

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