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Court Retrials in the UK
Court retrials in the UK are an important aspect of the regional judicial system. In most cases retrial decisions must be made with the utmost care, as double jeopardy is supposed to prevent someone from being found guilty after they have already been found to be innocent. However, there are some instances in which a retrial is the only fair course of action. Offences which are deemed to be extremely serious are subject to retrials, especially when new evidence comes to light at a later date. This type of issue is designed to prevent murderers, rapists and others who commit heinous crimes from walking free. Previous to the Criminal Justice Act of 2003, such offenders were protected from retrials if they had already received an acquittal.
DNA and fingerprint evidence often forces retrials in the UK. Technological advances allow new evidence to come to light, thus offering justice to the families who have experienced life-changing and tragic circumstances. However, before a retrial is granted, the court system conducts a careful examination of all new evidence. The ways in which the evidence is obtained, combined with the effectiveness of the tools used to produce it, plays a huge factor in retrial decisions. Police are able to arrest people who have been acquitted of serious crimes once they have received written consent from the DPP to do so. Once consent is given, police have the right to seize vehicles or any other possessions which might aid in a new investigation.