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In modern criminal trials, expert evidence often plays an important role. The question as to the guilt of the defendant is often contingent upon the results of DNA analysis, polygraphs, hair comparisons, and other forensic science techniques. At the same time, through a wide variety of problems inherent to the collection and production of such evidence, the use of expert evidence in criminal litigation is often highly problematical.
The vast range of problems that have been identified over the years, and the manifest presence of these problems in some of the more notorious ‘miscarriages of justice’ have made expert evidence one of the most debated topics in legal literature today. Many believe that in this particular field, criminal justice systems are in dire need of legal reform. This study attempts to contribute to this debate through an analysis and comparison of two legal systems that each employ a different method for expert involvement. The study seeks to identify the similarities and differences in how different legal systems deal with expert evidence. Additionally it seeks to establish what the experiences of one country can bring to another for the purpose of enhancing the cornerstone of criminal litigation: the concept of procedural fairness.