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Human Rights Law Directions

Human Rights Law Directions (5th edn)

Howard Davis
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date: 30 March 2023

p. 25212. Article 6: right to a fair triallocked

p. 25212. Article 6: right to a fair triallocked

  • Howard DavisHoward DavisReader in Public Law, Bournemouth University


Without assuming prior legal knowledge, books in the Directions series introduce and guide readers through key points of law and legal debate. It discusses European Convention law and relates it to domestic law under the HRA. Questions, discussion points, and thinking points help readers to engage fully with each subject and check their understanding as they progress and knowledge can be tested by self-test questions and exam questions at the chapter end. Article 6 is the right to a fair trial. It looks at the scope of Article 6—the kinds of trial it deals with; and defines ‘determines’, ‘civil rights and obligations’, and ‘criminal charge’ for this purpose. It then goes on to consider the specific rights that are inherent in the idea of a hearing that is ‘fair’ and tribunal that is ‘independent’ and ‘impartial’. It also discusses the additional rights that are enjoyed by a defendant in a criminal trial. Of particular importance is the issue of adjusting the concept of ‘fairness’ to the circumstances, particularly in the context of threats to national security. The need to protect the essence of a right to a fair hearing where there are important public interests justifying restrictions is an issue that is at the heart of the Article 6 case law.

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