Judgment on Criminal Trial (ss 289-297)
[Ch0802s289]289. Withdrawing charges
When an indictment or summons containing more
counts than one is framed against the same person, and when a conviction has
been obtained on one or more of them, the prosecutor may withdraw the remaining
charge or charges. Such withdrawal shall have the effect of an acquittal on
such charge or charges unless the conviction be set aside. In that event the
court (subject to the order of the court setting aside the conviction) may,
upon the application of the Director of Public Prosecutions, proceed with the
trial of the charge or charges so withdrawn.
[Ch0802s290]290. Mode of delivering judgment
(1) The judgment in every trial in any criminal
court in the exercise of its original jurisdiction shall be pronounced, or the
substance of such judgment shall be explained, in open court either immediately
after the termination of the trial or at some subsequent time, of which notice
shall be given to the parties and their legal representative, if any:
(i) the whole
judgment shall be read out by the presiding judge or magistrate if he is
requested to do so either by the prosecution or the defence;
(ii) in a case in
the High Court any judgment written by a judge may be read by any magistrate or
officer of the court if directed to do so;
(iii) in a case in
a magistrate's court any judgment written by a magistrate may be read by any
other magistrate if directed to do so;
(iv) where a court
convicts a person of murder it shall state whether in its opinion there are
extenuating circumstances and if it is of the opinion that there are such
circumstances, it may specify them, but any failure to comply with the
requirements of this proviso shall not affect the validity of the verdict of
any sentence imposed as a result thereof.
(2) The accused person shall, if in custody, be
brought before the court, or, if not in custody, be required by the court to
attend, to hear judgment delivered, except where his personal attendance during
the trial has been dispensed with and the sentence is one of fine only or he is
(3) No judgment delivered by any court shall be
deemed to be invalid by reason only of the absence of any party or his legal
representative on the day or from the place notified for the delivery thereof,
or of any omission to serve, or defect in serving, on the parties or their
legal representatives, or any of them, the notice of such day and place.
[Ch0802s291]291. Contents of judgment
(1) Every such judgment shall be written by or under
the direction of the presiding officer of the court in the language of the
court, and shall contain the point or points for determination, the decision
thereon and the reasons for the decision, and shall be dated and signed by the
presiding officer in open court at the time of pronouncing it.
(2) In the case of a conviction, the judgment
shall specify the offence of which, and the section of the Cap. 08:01 Penal
Code or other law under which, the accused person is convicted, and the
punishment to which he is sentenced.
(3) In the case of an acquittal, the judgment
shall state the offence of which the accused person is acquitted, and shall
direct that he be set at liberty.
[Ch0802s292]292. Arrest of judgment
(1) A person convicted of an offence before the
High Court, whether on his plea of guilty or otherwise, may, at any time before
sentence, move that Court that judgment be arrested on the ground that the
indictment does not disclose any offence.
(2) Upon the hearing of the motion the Court may
allow any such amendments of the indictment as it might have allowed before
(3) The Court may hear and determine the motion
either forthwith or after such adjournment as it may consider necessary.
[Ch0802s293]293. Decision may be reserved
The court before which any person is tried for an
offence may reserve the giving of its final decision on questions raised at the
trial; and its decision whenever given shall be considered as given at the time
of the trial.
[Ch0802s294]294. Sentence in the High Court
(1) If a motion in arrest of judgment is not made
or is dismissed, the High Court may either pass sentence upon the offender
forthwith or may discharge him on his recognizance, as hereinafter provided, on
condition that he shall appear and receive judgment at some future session of
the Court or when called upon.
(2) If sentence is not passed forthwith the
presiding officer of the Court may, at any subsequent sitting thereof at which
the offender is present, pass sentence upon him.
[Ch0802s295]295. Committal to High Court for sentence after conviction in a
(1) Where on the trial by a magistrate's court a
person who is not less than the apparent age of 17 years is convicted of an
offence, the court if it is of opinion that greater punishment should be
inflicted for the offence than it has power to inflict, may, for reasons to be
recorded in writing on the record of the case, instead of dealing with him in
any other manner, commit him in custody to the High Court for sentence.
(2) For the purposes of this section, the
aggregate of consecutive sentences imposed upon any person, in case of
conviction for several offences at one trial, shall be deemed to be a single
[Ch0802s296]296. Procedure on committal for sentence under section 295
(1) In any case where a magistrate's court commits
a person for sentence under the provisions of section 295, the magistrate's court
shall forthwith send a copy of the record of the case to the High Court.
(2) Any person committed to the High Court for
sentence shall be brought before the High Court at the next convenient sessions
thereof or earlier if so directed by that Court.
(3) When any person is brought before the High
Court in accordance with the provisions of subsection (2), the High Court shall
inquire into the circumstances of the case and, if satisfied from the record of
the accused's guilt, shall thereafter proceed as if such person had pleaded
guilty before the High Court in respect of the offence for which he has been so
(4) If the High Court, under the provisions of
this section, passes any sentence upon any person such person shall be deemed
to have been tried and convicted for the offence concerned before the High
[Ch0802s297]297. Provisions applicable to sentences in all courts
(1) The court may, before passing sentence,
receive such evidence as it thinks fit in order to inform itself as to the
sentence proper to be passed.
(2) Every warrant for the execution of any
sentence passed in a criminal case by any court may be issued either by the
officer who passed the sentence or by any judicial officer of that court, or in
the case of the High Court, by the Registrar or Assistant Registrar of that
(3) If, in a magistrate's court, sentence is not
passed upon an offender forthwith upon his conviction, or if, by reason of any
decision or order of the High Court on appeal, review or otherwise, it is
necessary to add to or vary any sentence passed in a magistrate's court, or to
pass sentence anew in such court, any judicial officer of that court may, in
the absence of the judicial officer who convicted the offender or passed the
sentence, as the case may be, pass sentence on the offender after consideration
of the evidence recorded and in the presence of the offender.