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Dispute facts in a Newton hearing

When to call a Newton hearing

You or the prosecution may request for a Newton hearing at any stage of the sentencing process when there is a dispute of any fact which may materially affect your sentence.

Some examples include:

  • Conflicting medical reports on whether you were suffering from a mental illness when committing the offence, or whether there is a causal link between your mental illness and the offence.
  • Disputes over your criminal records (antecedents).
  • Disagreements over facts or statements in your mitigation plea.

What to do in a Newton hearing

A Newton hearing is conducted like a trial. Both you and the prosecution will have a chance to call and examine witnesses through the 3 stages of examination-in-chief, cross-examination and re-examination before closing submissions are made.

The judge will then make the decision on the disputed issue of fact. Once the decision has been made, the judge will proceed with the rest of the sentencing process.

Need help?

The information here is for general guidance as the courts do not provide legal advice. If you need further help, you may want to get independent legal advice.

Find out more

2021/07/23

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