Criminal Procedure Amendment Act

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Published: 2001-07-20

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Criminal Procedure Amendment Act [No. 17 of 2001]
Government Gazette
Vol. 433 Cape Town 20 July 2001 No. 22483
No. 664 20 July 2001
It is hereby notified that the Acting President has assented to the following Act, which is hereby published for general information:–
No. 17 of 2001: Criminal Procedure Amendment Act, 2001

GENERAL EXPLANATORY KOTE: Words underlined with asolid line indicate insertions in existing enactments.
(Erlglisl7 text signed by the Acting President.) (Assented t o 13 Ju1,v 2001.)
ACT To amend the Criminal Procedure Act, 1977. so as to further regulate the presentation of evidence through an intermediary; and to provide for matters connected therewith.
B E IT ENACTED by the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa, as follows:- Substitution of section 170A of Act 51 of 1977, as inserted by section 3 efAct 135 of 1991
1. The follouing section is hereby substituted for section 170 of the Criminal 5 Procedure Act. 1977:
“Evidence through intermediaries
170A. (1) Whenever criminal proceedings are pending before any court and i t appears to such court that i t would expose any witness under the age of eighteen years to undue mental stress or suffering if he orshe testifies at 10 such proceedings. the court may, subject to subsection (4), appoint a competent person as an intermediary in order to enable such witness to give his evidence through that in ermediary.
( 2 ) (u ) No examination. cross-examination or re-examination of any ni tness in respect of u.horn a court has appointed an intermediar), under 15 subsection (1). except examination by the court, shall take place in any manner other than through that intermediary.
( / I ) The said intermediary may. unless the court directs otheru.ise, con\’ey the general purport of any question t o the relevant witness.
( 3 ) I f a court appoints an intermediary under subsection ( I ) . the court 10 may direct that the relevant witness hall give his evidence at any place- ( N ) ukich is informally arranged to set that witness at ease: (11) \vhich I S so situated tha; any person whose presence may upset that
lvitness. is outside the sight and hearing of that witness: and 15
(c) which enables the court and any person whose presence is necessary at the relevant proceedi7gs to see and hear, either directly or through the medium of any electronic or other devices, that intermediary as well as that witness during histe timony.
(4) ( r ~ l The Minister may by notice in the Cr rx f te determine the persons or the category or class of persons who are competent to De appointcd as intermediaries.
( / I ) An intermediary who is not in the full-time employment of the State shall be paid such travelling and subsistence and other allowmces in respect of the services rendered by him or her as the P1iniatc.r. with the conc~~rrence of the Minister of Finance. may determine.
( 5 ) l r i i No oath, affirmation or admonition Mhich has been administered through x 1 intermediary In terms of section 165 shall be i n \ x l i t l and no avidence which has been presented I.hrough an intermediary shall be inadrnissible solely on account o f the fact that such intermediary was not competent to be appointed as 31-1 intermediary in terms of LI regulation referred to in subsection ( - 4 ) ( l f ) . at the tune when such oath, aftirrmation or admonition was administered or such evidence was presented.
( / I ) I f i n :my proceedings it appears to ;L court that an oath. aflirmation or admonition was administtxd or that ebidence has been presented through a n intermediary who was appointcd in good faith but. at the time o f such appointment, was not quAificd to be appointed as an interrnediary in terms of a regulation referred 10 in subsection ( ~ ) ( L I ) , the court must make a finding as to the validity of that oath, affirmation or admonition or the admissibility of that evidmce, as the casc may be. with due rzgard to- ( i ) the reason why the intermediary concerned was not qualified to be
appointed as an intermediary. and the likelihood that he reason concerned will affect the reliability of the evidence so presented adversely;
(ii) the mental stress or 5LIffering which the witness. in respect of whom that intermediary wa> appointed, w i l l be exposed to if that evidence is to be presented anew, whether by the witness in person or through another intermediary: and
(iii) the likelihood that real and substantial justice w i l l be impaired i f that evidence is admitted.
(6) ( a j Subsection (5) does not prevent the prosecution from presenting anew any evidence which was presented through an intermediary referred to in that subsection.
10) The provisions of subsection (5) shall also be applicable in respect of all cases where an intermediary referred to in that subsection has been appointed. and in respect o f which. at the time of the commencement o f that subsection- ( i ) the trial court; or
(ii) the court considering an appeal or review. has not delivered judgmeg”.
Short title
2. This Act is called the Criminal Procedure Amendment Act. 1001