Majority verdicts

Heading: inserted, on 29 June 2009, by section 19 of the Juries Amendment Act 2008 (2008 No 40).

29C Criminal cases

(1)

In this section, majority verdict means, in relation to a jury that, at the time of its verdict, consists of a certain number of jurors, a verdict agreed to by all except one of them.

(2)

The court may accept a majority verdict in a criminal case if—

(a)

the jury, having retired to consider its verdict, has deliberated for at least 4 hours; and

(b)

the jurors have not reached a unanimous verdict; and

(c)

the foreperson of the jury has stated in open court—

(i)

that there is no probability of the jury reaching a unanimous verdict; and

(ii)

that the jury has reached a majority verdict; and

(d)

the court considers that the jury has had a period of time for deliberation that the court thinks reasonable, having regard to the nature and complexity of the trial.

(3)

If the case involves 2 or more charges, or 2 or more persons charged, the court may accept a majority verdict in relation to 1 or some of the charges or persons charged, in which case nothing in this section applies to the other charges or the other persons charged.

(4)

Nothing in this section—

(a)

prevents the court from taking a poll of the jury; or

(b)

affects section 110 or 143 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2011.

(5)

If, in terms of section 110 or 143 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2011, the offence charged, as described in the enactment creating the offence or as charged in the charge, includes the commission of any other offence, the court may accept a majority verdict on the offence charged instead of a unanimous verdict on the included offence.

Section 29C: inserted, on 29 June 2009, by section 19 of the Juries Amendment Act 2008 (2008 No 40).

Section 29C(4)(b): replaced, on 1 July 2013, by section 4(1) of the Juries Amendment Act 2013 (2013 No 30).

Section 29C(5): replaced, on 1 July 2013, by section 4(2) of the Juries Amendment Act 2013 (2013 No 30).