Not proven



Fifty-three shades of grey

In the 53rd and bonus addition to the jurisprudential primer series, Kapil Summan discusses the debate around the 'not proven' verdict and the views of its supporters and detractors. Thanks are due to Benjamin Bestgen and Dr Brian Barry, of Technological University Dublin, with whom the author had useful discussions on this topic. See the 52nd primer here.

Published 11 May 2021

Not proven: Lord Uist calls three verdict system ‘palpable nonsense’

The 'not proven' verdict is neither logical nor sensible, undermines the presumption of innocence and should be abolished, a recently retired judge has said.

Published 27 April 2021

Alistair Bonnington: Sheriffs use ‘not proven’ ten times more than juries

Alistair Bonnington, of Quis, questions the reasoning behind calls to scrap the 'not proven' verdict. 

Published 22 April 2021

Tony Lenehan: The emperor has no clothes

Advocate Tony Lenehan responds to yesterday's piece from academics on the 'not proven' debate.

Published 16 April 2021

Not proven: getting the arguments right

Professors James Chalmers, Fiona Leverick and Vanessa Munro address the 'not proven' debate with clarity and precision.

Published 15 April 2021

Ian Mitchell: ‘Not proven’ – the case in favour

Last week Sheriff (rtd.) Douglas Cusine contributed an article to Scottish Legal News entitled ‘Not proven’ debate lacks clarity. In it, he said, “For me, a ‘not proven’ verdict reflects what we have all experienced, and that is, ‘I’m just not sure.” Speaking for others, he said, “It may be that the ‘not proven’ verdict is seen by some as a message along the lines of 'We know you did it, but it has not been proven'.”

Published 13 April 2021

Tony Lenehan: Abolishing Scotland’s ‘not proven’ verdict would erode trust in juries

With great power comes great responsibility.

Published 12 April 2021

Sturgeon backs abolition of ‘not proven’

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said it is time to consider abolishing Scotland's unique 'not proven' verdict.

Published 6 April 2021

Scottish Conservatives promise to abolish ‘not proven’

The Scottish Conservatives have pledged to abolish the "not proven" verdict in a series of criminal justice election promises.

Published 1 April 2021

Scottish Conservatives vow to scrap ‘not proven’

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross has vowed to scrap the not proven verdict.

Published 23 November 2020

Robert More: Preserve ‘not proven’ and reform Scotland’s jury system

Solicitor advocate Robert More calls for the preservation of the not proven verdict and argues in favour of reforming Scotland's jury system.

Published 23 November 2020

David Lorimer: Mock jury research should not be the basis for reform

David Lorimer comments on JUSTICE Scotland's views of last year's mock jury research, which cast doubt on its value as a basis for reform of Scotland's three-verdict system.

Published 8 June 2020

Scottish government goes on the road to seek views on jury research

The Scottish government is hosting a series of engagement events across the country to seek views from the legal profession, third sector, and people with experience of the justice system, on the findings and any implications its jury research may have for future criminal justice reforms.

Published 7 January 2020

Glasgow School of Law podcast explores jury research

The latest episode of the University of Glasgow School of Law podcast features Professors Fiona Leverick and James Chalmers discussing their findings for the Scottish Jury Research Project with Dr Alan Brown.

Published 20 December 2019