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What is a criminal case disclosure conference

The criminal case disclosure conference (CCDC) process is a formal system of disclosing information about the case by you and the prosecution to facilitate the trial process. Before trial, parties have a legal duty to outline their cases and the evidence they will be relying on.

CCDC only applies to specific types of cases (1). CCDC may apply to you if your case is tried in the District Court (2) or General Division of the High Court (3), and your charge is brought under any of the statutes below:

  • Arms and Explosives Act
  • Arms Offences Act
  • Banishment Act
  • Banking Act
  • Casino Control Act
  • Computer Misuse Act
  • Corrosive and Explosive Substances and Offensive Weapons Act
  • Corruption, Drug Trafficking and Other Serious Crimes (Confiscation of Benefits) Act
  • Criminal Law (Temporary Provisions) Act
  • Hijacking of Aircraft and Protection of Aircraft and International Airports Act
  • Immigration Act (other than sections 6 and 15)
  • Infrastructure Protection Act 2017
  • Internal Security Act
  • Maintenance of Religious Harmony Act
  • Misuse of Drugs Act
  • Moneylenders Act
  • Oaths and Declarations Act
  • Official Secrets Act
  • Passports Act
  • Penal Code
  • Prevention of Corruption Act
  • Prevention of Human Trafficking Act 2014
  • Prisons Act
  • Protected Areas and Protected Places Act
  • Public Entertainments Act
  • Public Order and Safety (Special Powers) Act 2018
  • Remote Gambling Act 2014
  • Securities and Futures Act
  • Sedition Act
  • Vandalism Act

How to participate

For District Court cases, the judge will let you know whether the CCDC process applies to your case and will ask you to indicate whether you wish to participate in the CCDC process at your first pre-trial conference (PTC). For all other cases, the CCDC will only apply if all parties involved in the proceedings consent.

For cases in the General Division of the High Court, the CCDC process always applies and you cannot opt out.

If you are participating in a CCDC process, you will need to prepare documents and send them to the prosecution by the dates set by the judge.

The CCDC process

If you decide to participate in the CCDC process, you will have to attend 3 CCDCs in total. The court will give directions to facilitate the discovery procedure in between each CCDC.

This involves the service and exchange of information, documents and facts about the case within timelines set by the court.

The court will direct the prosecution to prepare and provide hard copies of the Case for the Prosecution to you.

For cases heard in the District Court, this will contain the following: (4)

  • The charge against you.
  • The Summary of Facts.
  • A list of the prosecution’s witnesses.
  • A list describing the documents and items which will be produced as evidence.
  • Any written statements made by you to a law enforcement officer that the prosecution intends to use as evidence.
  • A list of every statement, made by you to a law enforcement officer recorded in the form of an audiovisual recording, that the prosecution intends to use as evidence. Transcripts (if any) of these audiovisual recordings are also to be included.
    • If you request, the prosecution must arrange for you to view the audiovisual recording of each statement.

For cases heard in the General Division of the High Court, this will contain the following: (5)

  • The charge against you.
  • A list of the prosecution's witness.
  • A list describing the documents and items which will be produced as evidence.
  • Written statements from witnesses that the prosecution intends to use as evidence.
  • Any written statements made by you to a law enforcement officer that the prosecution intends to use as evidence.
  • A list of every statement, made by you to a law enforcement officer recorded in the form of an audiovisual recording, that the prosecution intends to use as evidence. Transcripts (if any) of these audiovisual recordings are also to be included.
    • If you request, the prosecution must arrange for you to view the audiovisual recording of each statement.
Tip

For cases in the General Division of the High Court, the Supreme Court registry will inform you when to collect the hard copies of the Case for the Prosecution at the registry if you are out on bail.

For District Court cases, the Attorney-General Chambers will mail the hard copies of the Case for the Prosecution to you if you are out on bail.

After you have received the prosecution’s case, you should:

  • Read and consider it carefully. It contains evidence on which the prosecution will be relying on to prove your guilt.
  • Review the prosecution's case and decide whether you still want to claim trial or plead guilty
  • Inform the court of your decision during the next CCDC.

If you decide to plead guilty

If you decide to plead guilty, the court will transfer your case to a Sentencing Court for your plea of guilt to be taken and for your sentencing.

If you maintain your intention to claim trial, the court will then direct you to prepare your Case for the Defence (view a sample).

You will need to prepare the following documents for your Case for the Defence:

  • A summary of your defence and the relevant supporting facts you wish to rely on.
  • A list of your witnesses.
    • Your list must include the names and particulars of your witnesses.
  • A list describing the documents and items you intend to produce in court as your evidence.
  • Any objections you may wish to raise to the Case for the Prosecution.
    • You will need to state the nature of the objection and the issue of fact on which you will be producing evidence.

You must:

  • Prepare your Case for the Defence in English.
  • Provide a copy of your case to the court as well as the prosecution within the timeline stipulated by the court.

If you need help with the legal aspects of your Case for the Defence, you should seek legal advice.

Note
It is crucial that you properly prepare your Case for the Defence. Otherwise, the court may draw adverse inferences (unfavourableinferences) against you at trial which may negatively impact your defence.

After serving your Case for the Defence

After you have served the Case for the Defence on the prosecution, you must serve on the prosecution a copy of each documentary exhibit in your possession, custody or power that is mentioned in the Case for the Defence.

This must be done within 2 weeks after the date the Case for the Defence was served.

After you have submitted your Case for the Defence, the prosecutionwill give you hard copies of the Prosecution’s Supplementary Bundle within 2 weeks. It contains the following documents: (6)
  • The documents found in the Case for the Prosecution.
  • Any other written statements and transcripts of any other statements recorded by audiovisual recording.
  • The list describing the documents and items which will be produced as evidence (only applicable for cases heard in the District Court.) (7)
  • Your criminal records, if any, upon payment of the prescribed fee.

Do review and consider the prosecution’s case carefully before you decide whether to claim trial or to plead guilty.

Tip

For cases in the General Division of the High Court, the Supreme Court registry will inform you when to collect the hard copies of the Prosecution's Supplementary Bundle at the registry if you are out on bail.

For District Court cases, the Attorney-General Chambers will mail the hard copies of the Prosecution's Supplementary Bundle to you if you are out on bail.

However, if you did not file your Case for the Defence, the prosecution will not need to provide the supplementary bundle.

By the third CCDC, the judge will ask you and the prosecution to indicate your respective positions. This means that the prosecution will decide whether to proceed with the charges, and you should decide whether you want to proceed to trial or plead guilty. Once these matters are sorted, thejudge will schedule the case for trial.

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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