Procurator Fiscal, Alloa v McIntosh and Hutchison

Criminal evidence and procedure – Lost evidence – cctv footage – Right to fair trial – Oppression. Sheriff Court: Sustaining the preliminary issues set out in compatibility minutes presented by two women who were charged with threatening or abusive behaviour, challenging the ongoing legality of the proceedings, the ground of challenge relating to an item of real evidence, namely closed circuit television ('cctv') footage, which had been destroyed, the court held that the loss of the cctv footage did infringe the right of both minuters to a fair trial under art 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights because the lost evidence was material, it per se might have been sufficient to persuade the court to acquit, and there would be a significant risk of injustice were the case to be permitted to proceed to trial; it would also be oppressive for the Crown to maintain a prosecution of the minuters.

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