The Trial Process

 

The case will follow a set pattern. The prosecution counsel begins by outlining details of the case. Next, each witness is called, sworn and questioned. This is called 'evidence in chief'.

 

When prosecution counsel have finished, the defence counsel will question the witness to discover any weaknesses or contradictions in their evidence. This is called cross-examination.

 

When all the prosecution witnesses have given their evidence and have been cross-examined, the defence counsel will present its case. This time, it is the defence counsel that calls witnesses, including the defendant, and it is the prosecution counsel that conducts the cross-examination.

 

To help remind you when you are considering a verdict, you might find it useful to take notes during the case. Paper and pens are provided in the jury box. If you need more, donít hesitate to ask a jury keeper.

 

If you require clarification on any point, you can raise it with a court official or the Judge.

 

When all the evidence has been given, first the prosecution and then the defence counsel will make their closing speeches. They will speak directly to you in the jury box, and they will attempt to convince you of their respective cases.

 

The Judge will then sum up the case, stressing the points of law.

Please listen carefully to what the Judge says, he or she has many years of legal experience and a thorough knowledge of the issues involved. The Judge will give you directions about your duties before you retire to reach your verdict.

 

If you encounter any difficulties during your deliberations, please contact the Judge for guidance.  This should be done through your jury keeper.