Taylor v. The Queen

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The appellant was convicted of abduction and rape and sentenced to 12 years’ imprisonment. The complainant was kidnaped from a car, driven to a remote location, and raped multiple times by two men. Upon arrival at the remote location, the police chased after the two men, but only caught and arrested one of the men – the appellant. The complainant testified that the appellant wore a stocking mask, and although he had spoken to her many times the night of her kidnaping, she did not recognize him until his stockinged face was illuminated by a car light. This identification was not made until a few days after the police arrested the appellant. The Court of Appeal quashed the convictions because the trial judge did not direct the jury on issues related to voice identification in general or concerns related to the timing of complainant’s identification. The Court of Appeals also faulted the prosecution for not conducting a controlled identification procedure to test the complainant’s ability to identify the appellant by the sound of his voice. The Court did not however order a retrial because it found the evidence to be “insufficient to justify a conviction by any jury which had been properly directed” due to the “glaring evidential gaps”.



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