Flashcards in Criminal Disclosure Relating To Homicide And Serious Crime Investigation Deck (6)
Disclosure managers should be guided by these principles:
- the governing principle of disclosure is RELEVANCE
- there is no OBLIGATION TO ACQUIRE for the purpose of satisfying disclosure obligations, material that is not already in Police possession or control, or that is not held in recorded form
- disclosure is an ON-GOING PROCESS and the reasons for withholding a document should be continually assessed
- the disclosure process must be AUDITABLE
- EFFECTIVE FILE MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS are critical to the success of the disclosure process
Prosecutors disclosure obligations do not begin until the commencement of proceedings
On appointment to the role, the disclosure manager must:
- read the disclosure managers desk file
- access the current SCT downloaded to the local district shared drive, for use during the investigation
- report to the 2IC to receive a briefing, tasking, establishing what information is and is not discoverable, and on-going supervision
What are the Disclosure Managers key responsibilities?
- ensure all relevant and discoverable material is provided to defence counsel
- ensure all relevant non-discoverable material is identified, listed and defence advised
- continually assess the risk to ensure that non-discoverable material is identified and not disclosed
- continually review to ensure that ongoing lawful justification to withhold exists for each document that is withheld
- ensure that robust auditable systems are employed to record disclosure decisions and actions (this includes compiling and maintaining the disclosure index)
- manage disclosure time frames within the provisions of the Act, or as otherwise directed by the courts.
- retain and file all correspondence with defence counsel, both incoming and outgoing, in the 50,000 category
- create a record in NIA or the fact of disclosure against the charge(s), and make a brief record of delivery of initial disclosure in NIA
All communication with the defence counsel should be conducted through the 2IC, or Crown Solicitor, where engaged
The rational for applying sequential page numbers to disclosed material is?
- it provides effective auditing of disclosed material
- provides reference for material that does not fall within the document numbering system
- any illegitimate claims made by defence counsel that particular material was not disclosed, can be promptly resolved by providing an exact copy of the numbered page that was disclosed and a reference number
- it enables accurate records to be maintained
Who is responsible for disclosure decision making?
The Disclosure Manager in consultation with the 2IC will identify documents that may need to be withheld or have deletions made to them