Tag Archives: Legal process

Bad hair: the legal response to mass forensic errors

Litigation (American Bar Association) Volume 42 Number 4, Summer 2016 pp. 32-36

Describes the case of Santae Tribble convicted for murder based on the unsound FBI analysis of hair and subsequently exonerated by DNA analysis.  Commentary on the findings of the 2009 National Academy of Sciences report and systemic problems with the use of forensic evidence and subsequent FBI review of cases involving hair analysis.

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Gerard Baden-Clay’s lawyers tell High Court there is no evidence he intended to kill his wife

ABC News | Louisa Rebgetz 29 June 2016

The DPP submitted documents to the High Court in February, arguing there was a motive for murder, including Baden-Clay’s affair and his “cold-blooded” dumping of Mrs Baden-Clay’s body.

“The yearning of a man to be with another woman has for a long time been regarded as relevant to the question of intent,” the documents said.

On Monday, Peter Shields Lawyers sent their written submission to the High Court on Baden-Clay’s behalf, arguing there was no direct evidence to suggest their client caused Mrs Baden-Clay’s death or that he did so with intent.

Their submission stated that while scratches on Baden-Clay’s face said something about the relationship he had with his wife, they said nothing about his intention.

“Proof he caused the death depended upon the drawing of inferences,” Baden-Clay’s lawyers wrote.

“Proof that he killed with the necessary intent depended upon the drawing of inferences.”

Baden-Clay’s lawyers told the High Court that the Court of Appeal concluded “the lies and steps to dispose of the body considered with all of the other evidence still left open the hypothesis of guilt of unlawful killing, hence a verdict of murder was not reasonably open”.

“This conclusion is correct.”

The full bench of the High Court will hear the appeal in Brisbane on July 26.

Read in full: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-06-28/gerard-baden-clay-lawyers-tell-high-court-no-evidence-intent/7550916


A setback for forensic science [Opinion]

The Washington Post William C Thompson 8 May 2015

The top managers of the District’s highly regarded crime laboratory were forced to resign or terminated last month after a dispute between the crime lab and the U.S. Attorney’s Office over interpretation and reporting of DNA evidence. News reports suggested it was simply a matter of incompetence.  But a simple-minded analysis reflects a serious misunderstanding about the details of the matter and the larger issues at stake.

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Courts may lose committal hearings

Courier Mail Renee Viellaris 8 October 2013

QUEENSLAND’S legal system faces its biggest reform in history after a State Government review urged the abolition of committal hearings.  A taskforce has also been set up within the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions to help determine how it can get offenders to plead guilty earlier, so time and money can be saved.

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Supreme Court Justice Paul de Jersey backs state-run injecting rooms, expressing sympathy for addicts

The Courier Mail Renee Viellaris 18 September 2013

STATE-run drug injecting rooms could be what addicts need to finally kick the habit, Queensland’s top judge says.

In a frank admission, Supreme Court Justice Paul de Jersey has revealed his compassion for drug addicts and his condemnation of traffickers.

Doctors have welcomed his statements, believing drug addicts are being punished rather than treated in Queensland.

Qld Chief Justice speaks of heroin use and parole abuse

ABC News 7:30 Qld 13 September 2013

Queensland’s Chief Justice Paul de Jersey says he believes some prisoners are abusing the parole system, and voiced support for drug injecting rooms.

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Body in barrel trial aborted

Courier Mail Tony Keim 17 June 2013

A BRISBANE judge has aborted the trial of a man accused of murdering his best mate, cementing the corpse in a barrel and dumping it in a river. Brisbane Supreme Court judge Margaret Wilson on Monday dismissed the jury of trial empanelled to decide the fate the fate of Anthony Charles Oliver.   Justice Wilson said it would not be appropriate to reveal hers reasons until the conclusion of any future trial.

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