A modern history of the not proven verdict

Chalmers, J. , Leverick, F. and Munro, V. E. (2021) A modern history of the not proven verdict. Edinburgh Law Review, 25(2), pp. 151-172. (doi: 10.3366/elr.2021.0692)

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While the origins of Scots law's unique “not proven” verdict in criminal cases are well-documented, there has been no systematic examination of its use and interpretation over time. Although the verdict has frequently been the subject of controversy in the courts, legal journals or public debate, analysis of it has tended to be sporadic and focused on specific controversies arising at given points in time. As a result, discussions about the verdict's future are often cyclical, meaning that the debate tends to repeat itself rather than advancing over time. This article fills this gap in the literature. Based on a comprehensive review of sources including (but not limited to) judicial statistics, court decisions, periodical literature and Parliamentary debates, it charts the evidence on the use of the not proven verdict by juries, the approach of the courts, and debates both on how the verdict should be interpreted and whether it should be retained.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Chalmers, Professor James and Leverick, Professor Fiona
Authors: Chalmers, J., Leverick, F., and Munro, V. E.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Law
Journal Name:Edinburgh Law Review
Publisher:Edinburgh University Press
ISSN (Online):1755-1692
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2021 The Edinburgh Law Review Trust and James Chalmers, Fiona Leverick, and Vanessa E Munro
First Published:First published in Edinburgh Law Review 25(2):151-172
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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