Yearly journal of scientific articles “Pravova derzhava” Volume 32 (2021),
Drozdovych Nadiia. Peculiarities of assessing evidence by the cassation court: contemporary practice
This article is devoted to the matters of providing evidence in criminal proceedings in the aspect of evidence assessment by the cassation court. The article states that evidence assessment takes place in the cassation court as a form of judicial activity that does not contradict and does not conflict with the norms of criminal procedural law concerning the powers of a cassation court to revise court rulings only within the scope of the matter of law. On the other hand, it points out the conformity of these conclusions at doctrinal, legislative and judicial practice levels. Based on the foregoing, it was established that evidence assessment by the cassation court has its own peculiarities through the prism of specifics of cassation proceedings. The foregoing is corroborated by analytical data of contemporary judicial practice of the Criminal Cassation Court of the Supreme Court (CCC SC). This article describes the results of an analysis of CCC SC rulings, which demonstrate most vividly the assessment of evidence by the court of this instance. In particular, it was established that this judicial activity manifests itself the most in the rulings that exercise the authority to overrule court rulings and close criminal proceedings, and also, to change judgments of local courts and resolutions of appellate courts due to the need to exclude certain evidence. The reasons for reversal of court rulings and for closing criminal proceedings, which overwhelmingly concern inadequate evidence assessment by courts of lower instances for the purpose of determining their quality (admissibility) and content, were analyzed. In the category of court rulings that changed judgments of local courts and resolutions of appellate courts and excluded certain evidence, judicial practice of the cassation court concerning recognition of evidence as inadmissible, because its quality is nonconformant with requirements of procedural form in view of the failure to observe the evidence gathering procedure, infringement of the investigation procedure, violation of the right to defense in the course of investigation, failure to comply with requirements to documentation and opening of evidence, or incorrect determination of the source of evidence, was demonstrated. As a result, a conclusion was drawn that the cassation court assesses evidence in the form of “assessment check”, which is a special form of implementing the principle of free assessment of evidence.
Key words: evidence assessment, cassation court, admissibility of evidence, exclusion of evidence, closure of a criminal proceedi
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