- Maureen SpencerMaureen SpencerFormer Associate Professor Middlesex University
- and John SpencerJohn SpencerBarrister
This chapter introduces the principles and key concepts underlying the law of evidence, with an emphasis on criminal evidence. It reviews Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), now part of English law as a result of the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA). It points to factors which are reducing adversarialism in English criminal trials. The risks, along with the advantages, of the increasing use of computer technology in presenting evidence, are illustrated by reference to the wrongful prosecutions of hundreds of Post Office counter staff for dishonesty offences. The chapter concludes by highlighting the importance of analysis of the relevance of the facts in a trial.