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Hearsay Rule Notes

BPTC Law Notes > BPTC Criminal Litigation Notes

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A more recent version of these Hearsay Rule 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:


? increase risk of fraud
? no opportunity to assess demeanour of speaker
? cannot be tested by XX
? danger of mistake arising from repetition (Chinese whispers)
? problems in assessing weight (especially for jury) ADMISSIBILITY

? hearsay admissible ONLY if: (a) (b) (c) (d)

statutory provision makes it admissible rule of law preserved by s118 makes it admissible all parties to proceedings agree to it being admissible; or in interests of justice for it to be admissible

DEFINTITION (s114, s115 CJA 2003)

(a) a statement o = any form that enables a representation of fact to be made: oral, written, gesture, conduct

(b) NOT made in oral evidence in the proceedings o statements made on oath in other proceedings = hearsay (c) admitted as evidence of any matter stated i.e. to prove truth of its contents (by party seeking to admit)

o it is 'ordinarily essential that evidence of the truth of a matter to be given in person by a witness who speaks from his own observation or knowledge' (Horncastle)

o = hearsay evidence of matter stated (though may fall within exception) (a) 'produce of Spain' marked on imported bags (evidence of country of origin)

(b) information indelibly stamped into goods (c) information stamped onto document e.g. date (d) car registration, records complied in manufacture of car = hearsay of engine number

(e) person relating own DOB and place of birth (f) statement by a police officer that X is a 'known heroin user', if got info from others

(d) purpose of maker is to cause: i. another person to:
? believe the matter stated; ORact on the basis that the matter is as stated

ii. a machine to act on the basis that the matter is as stated (s115)

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