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The issue of lurking doubt - Essay Example

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The following essay "The issue of lurking doubt" deals with the lurking doubt test. According to the text, appeals of a unmeritorious are only allowed by the court when it allows appeals using the lurking doubt test, so the test should be consigned to history…
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The issue of lurking doubt
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Download file to see previous pages But after the passing of CAA 1966, the court is now vested with the power of allowing an appeal against a conviction if the court feels that the jury’s verdict should be discarded on the basis that the case is unsafe or not acceptable or does not satisfy all conditions. Lord Widgery stated that a court must leave the objective part of a case and take a subjective measure of the case analysis. The subjective measure proposed by Widgery is that the court should decide whether to let the matter rest as it is or whether they have some lurking doubt. In this case, the lurking doubt is considered if it makes the court wonder if some miscarriage of justice was committed. This subjective test is strictly not based on the evidence received by the court; instead, it is based on the general feel of the case and the personal opinion of the judge(s) of the case. The precedent set by Lord Widgery in 1966 became the lurking doubt test for the appellate court, where each member of the bench considers if the verdicts given are unsafe or unsatisfactory and then allows the conviction to pass or be quashed.
The decision on whether the lurking doubt test should be consigned to history or still be used is based on the court itself and the trial jury. An analysis of different cases indicated that the test is still in use but can be arguable. From an analysis of Malleson’s () research into the use of the lurking doubt test, it is found that after Widgery’s introduction of the test in Cooper, 6 cases used the test between then and 1989....
inst a conviction if the court feels that the jury’s verdict should be discarded on the basis that the case is unsafe or not acceptable, or does not satisfy all conditions. Lord Widgery (1969) stated that a court must leave the objective part of a case and take a subjective measure to the case analysis. The subjective measure proposed by Widgery is that the court should decide whether to let the matter rest as it is or whether they have some lurking doubt. In this case the lurking doubt is considered if it makes the court wonder if some miscarriage of justice was committed.7 This subjective test is strictly not based on the evidence received by the court; instead it is based on the general feel of the case and the personal opinion of the judge(s) of the case. The precedent set by Lord Widgery in 1966 became the lurking doubt test for the appellate court, where each member of the bench considers if the verdicts given are unsafe or unsatisfactory and then allows the conviction to pass or be quashed. The decision on whether the lurking doubt test should be consigned to history or still be used is based on the court itself and the trial jury. An analysis of different cases indicated that the test is still in use but can be arguable. From an analysis of Malleson’s () research into the use of the lurking doubt test, it is found that after Widgery’s introduction of the test in Cooper (1969),8 6 cases used the test between then and 1989. However, in 1990, of the 102 successful appeals, 6 of them included the aspect of the lurking doubt test, as compared to 14 out of 114 cases in 1992.9 In the 1992 cases, Malleson states that the 14 convictions were reversed based on the court’s opinion that the jury reached wrong decisions, despite the fact that no new evidence was ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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