Victorian Current Acts

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Directions which may be given at ground rules hearings

    (1)     At a ground rules hearing, the court may make or vary any direction for the fair and efficient conduct of the proceeding.

    (2)     Without limiting subsection (1), the court may give one or more of the following directions—

        (a)     a direction about the manner of questioning a witness;

        (b)     a direction about the duration of questioning a witness;

        (c)     a direction about the questions that may or may not be put to a witness;

        (d)     if there is more than one accused, a direction about the allocation among the accused of the topics about which a witness may be asked;

        (e)     a direction about the use of models, plans, body maps or similar aids to help communicate a question or an answer;

        (f)     a direction that if a party intends to lead evidence that contradicts or challenges the evidence of a witness or that otherwise discredits a witness, the party is not obliged to put that evidence in its entirety to the witness in cross-examination.

Note to s. 389E(2)(f) amended by No. 22/2020 s. 11, repealed by No. 38/2022 s. 72(1).

    *     *     *     *     *

Notes to s. 389E inserted by No. 38/2022 s. 72(2).


1     A direction referred to in subsection (2)(f) may exclude all or part of the operation of the rule attributed to Browne v Dunn (1893) 6 R 67 followed and applied in criminal proceedings in Victoria in R v McDowell [1997] 1 VR 473 (CA), R v MG (2006) 175 A Crim R 342, R v SWC (2007) 175 A Crim R 71 and R v Ferguson (2009) 24 VR 531 in the circumstances in which, and in relation to witnesses to which, this Division applies.

2         Section 41 of the Evidence Act 2008 requires the court to disallow an improper question or improper questioning put to a witness in cross-examination, or inform the witness that it need not be answered.

Division 2—Intermediaries

S. 389F inserted by No. 5/2018 s. 25.

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