The following Corporate Crime practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
The statement of an absent witness is only admissible if the following conditions are satisfied:
the evidence would be admissible as oral evidence in the proceedings, if the witness had been available to attend court, and
the person who made the statement is identified to the court's satisfaction
the witness falls within one of the categories of absent witnesses. These are:
a witness who is dead
those who are medically unfit
those who are outside the UK and it is not reasonably practicable to secure their attendance
those who cannot be found, although reasonable practicable steps have been taken to find them, and
those who are in fear
A witness will not fall into a category of an 'absent witness' if the person who wishes to rely on the hearsay statement caused the witness's absence. The ‘person in support of whose case’ the statement is sought to be relied on is a reference to the defendant or their legal representatives. This was the interpretation given to this provision in R v C in which the appellant, on appeal against conviction, sought to argue that the ABE interview of a complainant who had committed suicide was inadmissible under CJA 2003, s 116(5) on the basis that her absence as a witness was caused by herself and as the
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