Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Balance in the Criminal Law Review Group

From http://www.justice.ie :

Request for Submissions

Following a speech made in Limerick on 20 October 2006 on rebalancing criminal justice, the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, Michael McDowell, T.D. has set up a review group entitled the Balance in the Criminal Law Review Group to consider the following issues
- the right to silence
- allowing character evidence of an accused
- the exclusionary rule of evidence
- requiring the accused to outline the nature of his defence before or at the commencement of a trial
- re-opening new evidence
- nullifying an acquittal where there is evidence of jury or witness tampering
- "with prejudice" appeals in the case of wrongful acquittal
- extending alibi evidence rules to other analogous situations
- allowing submissions by the prosecution before sentencing
- modifying the rule in relation to hearsay evidence

The Review Group will be chaired by Dr. Gerard Hogan, S.C., Law School, Trinity College, Dublin. The Tánaiste has asked the Review Group to report back by 1 March 2007. A copy of the Tánaiste's speech and details of the membership of the Review Group and its full terms of reference are available on the website of the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform at http://www.justice.ie.

In order to assist the group in its deliberations,written submissions on the main issues set out in the terms of reference are invited from interested parties and bodies and from members of the general public. Submissions should be made in writing only to

Balance in the Criminal Law Review Group,
Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform,
Floor 3 Montague Court,
Montague Street,
Dublin 2.

Written submissions may be also made electronically to lawreview@justice.ie.
The closing date for receipt of submissions is 5.30 p.m. Friday 5 January 2007.
Because of the tight deadline for submission of the Report of the Review Group, viz. 1 March 2007, it should be noted that the deadline for written submissions must be strictly observed and the Review Group will not be in a position to extend the closing date for submissions.