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Sexual offence allegations – rape victim cross-examination

In Andrade [2015] EWCA 1722 the Court of Appeal had to consider the refusal by a judge to permit cross-examination of a complainant in a rape case about a prior incident of consensual sexual intercourse with the appellant. The cross-examination of complainants in sexual offences is precluded without leave of the court by section 41 Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999. In this case, the Court ruled that the trial had failed to read in his obligation to interpret the statute by incorporating the European Convention on Human Rights 1998 as he is obliged to do by virtue of section 3 Human Rights Act 1998. Whilst the Court deemed the conviction to be unsafe by virtue of the Judge's refusal to grant leave, it was rightly critical of the defence for failing to make such application in writing as they were obliged to do under the Criminal Procedure Rules.


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