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Human Rights and Self-Incrimination

Jonathan Levy Partner and Andrew Watters Partner LevyWatters examines the right to silence and privilege against self-incrimination in the light of R v Kearns
Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights includes a right to silence and a privilege against self-incrimination (referred to collectively as 'the privilege' in this article). These provide an important constraint on the use of coercion by the State to elicit information from a person in circumstances where that information may subsequently be used in a criminal prosecution against him. In the tax field however the privilege against self-incrimination has produced more heat than light. This article examines the privilege in the light of the recent Court of Appeal decision in R v Kearns [2002] EWCA Crim 748.

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