Excluding evidence of bad character
Excluding evidence of bad character

The following Corporate Crime guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Excluding evidence of bad character
  • Excluding evidence of the defendant's 'bad character' under CJA 2003, s 101(3)
  • Excluding evidence of 'bad character' under PACE 1984, s 78
  • Exclusion under the Criminal Procedure Rules
  • Forms and time limits for applications to exclude

Excluding evidence of the defendant's 'bad character' under CJA 2003, s 101(3)

Where evidence of a defendant's bad character is admissible under the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (CJA 2003) to show a propensity to offend or to be untruthful (gateway D) or to counter an attack on another person's character (gateway G), CJA 2003 stipulates that court 'must not admit' such evidence if it appears that the admission of evidence would have such an adverse affect on the fairness of the proceedings that the court ought not to admit it.

For information on when gateways D and G apply see Practice Notes: Admissibility of bad character to prove guilt (propensity), Admissibility of bad character to prove untruthfulness and Admission of bad character to correct false impression or counter an attack.

There is no discretion under CJA 2003 to refuse to admit evidence of a defendant's bad character under the statutory other gateways of admissibility, namely:

  1. as important explanatory evidence (gateway C)

  2. as evidence of substantial probative value in relation to an important matter in issue between the defendant and co-defendant (gateway E)

  3. to correct a false impression (gateway F)

For information on these gateways, see Practice Notes: Admissibility of bad character as important explanatory evidence, Bad character adduced by co-defendant and Admission of bad character to correct false impression or counter