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NCJ Number: 66925 Find in a Library
Title: RECENT TRENDS IN CONFESSIONS
Journal: UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA LAW REVIEW  Volume:13  Issue:1  Dated:(1979)  Pages:81-101
Author(s): F KAUFMAN
Corporate Author: University of British Columbia
Faculty of Law
Canada
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 21
Sponsoring Agency: University of British Columbia
Vancouver, BC V6T 1W5, Canada
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: CONCEPTS RELATED TO THE ADMISSIBILITY OF EVIDENCE AND CONFESSIONS UNDER CANADIAN LAW ARE EXPLORED THROUGH DISCUSSION OF VOIR DIRE, THE ROLE OF THE JUDICIAL OFFICER, PSYCHIATRIC EXAMINATIONS, AND CASE LAW.
Abstract: ALTHOUGH MORE THAN 200 YEARS HAVE ELAPSED SINCE COMMON LAW COURTS FIRST NOTED PROBLEMS WITH CONFESSIONS MADE UNDER THREATS OR PROMISES, CONFUSION STILL EXISTS REGARDING ATTEMPTS TO DEFINE THIS STATE OF LAW. THE BASIC RULE IS CLEARLY STATED IN R. V. WARICKSHALL (1783) TO THE EFFECT THAT A FREE AND VOLUNTARY CONFESSION IS ADMISSIBLE, A FORCED CONFESSION IS NOT. THE DIFFICULTY ARISES IN APPLICATION OF THE RULE. THE REASONING SET FORTH IN IBRAHIM V. R (1922) REMAINS THE FRAMEWORK OF CONFESSION ADMISSIBILITY TODAY. MOST QUESTIONS OF APPLICATION FOCUS ON THE CONCEPT OF VOIR DIRE. IN R. V. SWEEZEY (1974), THE COURT HELD THAT A VOIR DIRE NEED NOT BE HELD IN EVERY CASE TO DECIDE WHETHER A STATEMENT MADE BY AN ACCUSED WAS VOLUNTARY; THE VOLUNTARY NATURE OF THE STATEMENT COULD BE SHOWN BY THE CIRCUMSTANCES SURROUNDING THE MAKING OF THE STATEMENT. THE TRIAL JUDGE SHOULD HOLD A VOIR DIRE WHEN COUNSEL INDICATES THAT THE ADMISSIBILITY OF THE STATEMENT IS CONTESTED OR WHEN CIRCUMSTANCES CAST DOUBT UPON ITS VOLUNTARY NATURE. SIMILARLY, A VOIR DIRE IS NOT REQUIRED WHEN A STATEMENT IS GIVEN UNDER OATH TO THE COURT. THE LEGAL AREA REGARDING STATEMENTS MADE TO PSYCHIATRISTS REMAINS CLOUDED. ALTHOUGH SUCH STATEMENTS ARE SUPPOSEDLY PROTECTED BY CONFIDENTIALITY, SUCH HOLDINGS AS PERRAS V. THE QUEEN (1973), WOULD INDICATE THAT THE ACCUSED WOULD BE BETTER OFF TO REMAIN SILENT. RECENT DECISIONS SUCH AS R V. PING LING (1976) REPRESENT A RETURN TO ESTABLISHED CONCEPTS OF CRITERIA FOR ADMISSIBILITY OF CONFESSIONS. FOOTNOTES ARE PROVIDED. (LWM)
Index Term(s): British Columbia; Canada; Confessions; Judicial decisions; Rules of evidence; Voir dire
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=66925

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