IALS Fellow's Seminar: Verification of Evidence - between the Efficiency of the Procedure and the Guarantees of the Fair Trial in Criminal Proceedings
01 Dec 2021, 12:00 to 01 Dec 2021, 13:30
Online Seminar (Zoom)
The verification of evidence in a criminal trial is a complex and multifaceted guarantee mechanism aimed at eliminating an evidentiary act performed by an unauthorised person or body, without legal basis, or by a person or body acting ultra vires, by declaring it inadmissible or even invalid. The verification of evidence is therefore a legal and evidentiary safeguard which should form part of the judicial review from the earliest stage of a criminal prosecution . This legal and evidentiary mechanism should prohibit the use of evidence that is materially and procedurally flawed or that interferes disproportionately with the sphere of particularly sensitive human dignity and the right to privacy. The latter case justifies the prohibition of the use of evidence that violates conventionally and constitutionally established human rights and freedoms.
This mechanism prohibits the use of evidence obtained in violation of the law and procedure, certain methods of taking evidence, the use of torture and the coercion of self-incrimination. Any violation of the standards of evidentiary acts in a democratic state under the rule of law must result in the evidence obtained in this way being declared inadmissible, as its use would be tantamount to a denial of the fundamental socio-legal guarantees and values on which the criminal trial is based. Verification, regardless of whether the trial is adversarial or inquisitorial in nature, is therefore a guarantee mechanism that allows the court a broad analysis of the gathering, obtaining, conducting, evaluating and managing of evidence and evidentiary actions. It is based on rules of evidence, in particular concerning the admissibility of evidence, as well as the standard, quality, relevance and proportionality of evidentiary acts.
In this paper I identify the Verification of Evidence in the criminal trial in terms of the standard, quality, validity, propriety and proportionality of evidentiary acts. The aim is to determine which elements are subject to gradation from the point of view of procedural values, to assess their impact on the issue of criminal responsibility and to examine the possibility of adopting certain solutions from the "common law" jurisdiction in order to improve the assessment of evidence in the Polish criminal trial. Verification of evidence serves to protect the criminal trial from the most serious threats to the fairness of the evidence procedure, e.g. abuse of the right to evidence and/or illegal acquisition of evidence, in different situations, in different procedural settings and at different stages of the trial. Finally, I make an attempt to identify rational and fair criteria for the admissibility of evidence.
Speaker: Dr Łukasz Cora is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Evidence Law and Forensic Science, Faculty of Law and Administration, University of Gdańsk ( Poland ), IALS Visiting Research Fellow. He defended his PHD in 2013 on the issue of Detention in the Polish criminal proceedings. In his scientific work he focuses on the issues of the law of evidence, coercive measures and protection of human rights in the criminal process. He is the author of about 50 scientific works including articles and comments on judgements. He conducted his scientific research at the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law in Freiburg and IALS.
Chair: Dr Colin King, Reader in Law and Director of the Centre for Financial Law, Regulation & Compliance (FinReg) at IALS.
This Webinar is free but advance booking is required. Details about how to join the virtual event will be circulated via email to registered attendees closer to the event date.
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