Post-Corroboration Safeguards Review Report of the Academic Expert Group

Chalmers, J. , Leverick, F. and Shaw, A. (Eds.) (2014) Post-Corroboration Safeguards Review Report of the Academic Expert Group. Scottish Government: Edinburgh.

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As a general rule, no person can be convicted of a criminal offence in Scotland in the absence of corroborated evidence. This means that there must be two sources of evidence in respect of each essential element of the crime, including the identity of the accused as the perpetrator of the crime. The Scottish Government has proposed to abolish this rule. In February 2014, Lord Bonomy was appointed to chair a Reference Group “to consider what additional safeguards and changes to law and practice may be needed in Scotland’s criminal justice system when the corroboration requirement is abolished”. Lord Bonomy’s review is known as the Post-Corroboration Safeguards Review.

It remains the Government’s intention to abolish corroboration as part of the Criminal Justice (Scotland) Bill, currently before the Scottish Parliament.

Lord Bonomy requested that an academic expert group produce a report covering additional safeguards against wrongful conviction and other changes in law and practice which might be considered for introduction into the Scottish criminal justice system.

This is the report of that expert group, which was considered by the Reference Group in September 2014. This report provides background information and analysis based on research into the law and practice of Scotland and other jurisdictions, along with relevant social science literature and decisions of the European Court of Human Rights. It does not make direct proposals for change, but does identify issues and proposals which it is recommended that the Review should consider.

This executive summary provides an account of chapter 4 of the report, which reviews the evidence on causes of wrongful conviction; and Part B, which canvasses various possibilities for change. It does not summarise chapters 1-3, which set out background information, or the separate reports found in Part C. It sets out all the specific issues which the report recommended that the Review consider.

Item Type:Edited Books
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Chalmers, Professor James and Leverick, Professor Fiona and Shaw, Mr Alasdair
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Law
Publisher:Scottish Government
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2014 The Scottish Government
Publisher Policy:Reproduced with the permission of the publisher.

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