Article: article from journal or magazin.
Scientific evidence and the right to a fair trial under Article 6 ECHR
Law, Probability and Risk
The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) does not mandate any particular format when forensic science findings are reported to the instructing magistrate or to the fact-finder. In the limits posed by the right to a fair trial (Article 6 ECHR), national authorities are thus free to set their own rules in the matter. However, even if the scientific techniques and reasoning on which they base their analyses and interpretations are similar, not all forensic practitioners report their results in the same way, and there is vigorous debate in the relevant communities as to the (scientifically) most appropriate way to express the probative value of one’s findings. We contend that the current situation is unsatisfactory as certain conclusion formats pose a risk to the fairness of the proceedings because of their lack of robustness and transparency. We make recommendations to expand current legal requirements, both at a formal and substantive level, to ensure that the right to a fair trial is effectively materialized when scientific evidence is brought against the accused.
expert evidence, forensic science, fair trial, European Convention on Human Rights
Web of science
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