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Disclosure Notes

BPTC Law Notes > BPTC Criminal Litigation Notes

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A more recent version of these Disclosure notes – written by City Law School students – is available here.

The following is a more accessble plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our BPTC Criminal Litigation Notes. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:

DISCLOSURE Used and Unused Material Used material = material relied on to prove indictment i.e. the case papers: WSs, exhibits, ROTI Unused material = material NOT relied upon e.g. PC's pocket book, dead-end police enquiries, repetitive statements, crime reports

Investigator's Duty to Retain and Record Relevant Material Investigator = police officer investigating crime Duty to Record and Retain Relevant Material Code of Practice (under Criminal Procedure and Investigations Act ("CPIA"))- makes investigator responsible for ensuring that any information relevant to the investigation is recorded and retained, whether:gathered during the course of the investigation (eg. docs seized in search of premises), ORgenerated by the investigation (eg. interview records)

Where any doubt about relevance of material, investigator should retain it. Duty to retain particularly applies to:Crime reports, report forms, relevant parts of incident report books and POs' notebooks,Final versions of Witness Statements,Draft versions of Witness Statements where content differs from final version,Interview records (written or taped),expert reports and schedules,any material casting doubt on reliability of a confession,any material casting doubt on reliability of a Witness.

Does not extend to purely ancillary items, eg. duplicate copies of docs. Material must be retained at least until criminal proceedings are concluded If Defendant convicted, must be retained until at least 6 months after conviction or until Defendant released from custody (whichever is later) Offences going to Trial Schedule of Unused Material Where Investigator believes that Defendant is likely to plead NG at summary trial, or case likely to be tried in Crown Court, he must prepare a schedule listing material retained which does NOT form part of Prosecution case against Defendant. Any sensitive material should be listed in a separate schedule (material which investigator believes not in public interest to disclose).

Material undermining Prosecution Case Investigator should draw Prosecution's attention to any material which might undermine the Prosecution case. The Disclosure officer
= responsible for examining records created during investigation and proceedings and disclosing material as required to the Prosecution or Defendant Must certify that, to the best of his knowledge and belief, the duties imposed under the Code have been complied with After Defence Statement If Defence statement given, investigator must look again at the material retained and draw Prosecution's attention to any material which might reasonably be expected to assist the defence disclosed. Later Material If investigator comes into possession of new material, must comply with duties -ie. draw to Prosecution's attention if material might undermine Prosecution case or reasonably be expected to assist the defence disclosed.

Prosecution DisclosureBefore statutory duty to disclose arises, Prosecution may be under common-law duty to disclose such material to the defence at an earlier stage,
* eg. as it might help the defence in a bail application or to prepare for trial.

The test for disclosure Main duty to disclose previously undisclosed material if it might reasonably be considered capable of (a) undermining the case of the Prosecution against Defendant; OR (b) assisting Defendant's caseIf no such material - Defendant must be given written statement of this."Prosecution material" - material which Prosecution possesses or has been allowed to inspect."Disclosure":
* give to Defence, OR
* allow Defence to inspect it at a reasonable time and place.Disclosure must generally be carried out as soon as reasonably practicable.Material must not be disclosed if Court concluded it is not in public interest to disclose it.If Prosecution given doc indicating any non-sensitive info which has not been given to

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