The Magistrate's Blog (2005-2012)

This blog has migrated to www.magistratesblog.blogspot.co.uk This blog is anonymous, and Bystander's views are his and his alone. Where his views differ from the letter of the law, he will enforce the letter of the law because that is what he has sworn to do. If you think that you can identify a particular case from one of the posts you are wrong. Enough facts are changed to preserve the truth of the tale but to disguise its exact source.

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Location: Near London, United Kingdom

The blog is written by a retired JP, with over 30 years' experience on the Bench.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Panacea? - Er- No.

The press is getting a bit excited on a slow-news day about the prospect of lie detectors (aka polygraphs) being used in this country. If the reports are correct these gadgets may, under some circumstances, help police to know where to direct their enquiries, and what questions they might usefully ask suspects. As to their usefulness in evidence, forget it. The criminal standard of proof (Beyond Reasonable Doubt) is a very high one, and any half-competent defence brief could make mincemeat of any case that turned on this kind of evidence.