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4.10.2 - Charge: Anti-Speculation Direction

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When to Give this Charge

This charge should be given where:

  • The jury might think that the prosecution should have called a particular witness to give evidence;
  • An adverse inference may not be drawn from the prosecution’s failure to call the witness;
  • Prosecution counsel have requested the direction, or there are substantial and compelling reasons for giving the direction in the absence of a request.

It may be modified for use in cases where the jury might think that the prosecution should have questioned a witness about a particular matter.

Alternative Charge

In exceptional cases, a section 43 direction, addressing the adverse inference which can be drawn from a failure to call or question a witness, may be given instead of an anti-speculation direction.

Anti-Speculation Direction

You may have noticed that NOW did not give evidence in this case. You must not speculate about what s/he might have said if s/he had given evidence. As I have told you, you must decide this case solely on the evidence which has been given in court.

 

Last updated: 29 June 2015

See Also

4.10 - Prosecution Failure to Call or Question Witnesses

4.10.1 - Charge: Section 43 Direction