Evidence of accomplice witness was properly admitted in criminal trial

By: Ciaran Joyce BL

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Court of Appeal dismisses appeal of convictions for burglary, aggravated burglary, assault and vehicular offences, on the grounds that evidence of a key witness and accomplice (who was subsequently admitted to the Witness Protection Programme) was properly admitted, and the jury was warned by the trial judge in his charge about the dangers of acting on that uncorroborated evidence.

Criminal law – appeal of convictions for burglary, aggravated burglary, assault, using an MPV without the consent of the owner and allowing himself to be carried in a vehicle taken without the consent of the owner – s. 3 of the Non-Fatal Offences against the Person Act – s. 112 of the Road Traffic Act – s. 113 of the Road Traffic Act – whether the evidence of a key witness and accomplice to the appellant failed to achieve a threshold of minimum credibility and should not have been admitted – admission to the Witness Protection Programme – uncorroborated evidence of an accomplice – procedures followed by gardai – application for a direction – trial judge's charge – prosecution closing – appeal dismissed.

Note: This is intended to be a fair and accurate report of a decision made public by a court of law. Any errors should be notified to the editor and will be dealt with accordingly.

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