‘A Practical Guide to the Use of Expert Evidence in Criminal Cases – Second Edition’ by Richard Padley


Paperback: 978-1-914608-50-6
Published: April 2023
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SKU: B0290 CRIMINALEVIDENCE 2 Categories: , Tags: , , ,


In recent times the use of expert evidence has hit the headlines when scrutiny over the expert’s qualifications and experience has undermined the credibility of their evidence. This has rapidly become an area of law that practitioners cannot afford to get wrong.

This book takes the practitioner through all stages of the process from initial identification of the need for expert evidence, through to maximising the benefit of this evidence at trial. It considers the practical steps required for adducing expert evidence at trial (noting the appropriate procedure rules and practice directions), and how this can most appropriately be presented to the tribunal (including references to key authorities as appropriate).

The second edition of this book provides an update in relation to matters of admissibility and the use of expert evidence, but also expands on the types of expert evidence that practitioners may come across in their own work. It aims to provide the practitioner with a level of understanding of these fields that can be used to build confidence when tackling an expert report and challenging an expert in court. With that in mind it is suitable for both junior practitioners coming across these areas of expertise for the first time and seeking to build their knowledge afresh, as well as the more seasoned practitioner seeking to refresh their knowledge as well as understanding some of the greater detail surrounding the various fields of expertise.


Richard completed pupillage with 5 Paper Buildings in 2014, obtaining tenancy at the set and has continued to practice since. His practice encompasses a range of criminal matters, with a particular focus on fraud, money laundering and confiscation. Richard’s practice often encompasses the use of expert witnesses and is regularly instructed to advise and represent individuals with mental health concerns.

Alongside publication of this book Richard presents a seminar series on the use of expert evidence in criminal trials, delivering presentations to both prosecution and defence practitioners on how to use and challenge expert evidence in criminal proceedings.


  • Chapter 1 – An Introduction to Expert Evidence – What is an expert report? Who can be an expert? The independence of expert witnesses
  • Chapter 2 – The use of Expert Evidence in Criminal Proceedings – covering case management, unused material, the presentation of expert evidence in court, directing the jury
  • Chapter 3- An introduction to the use of psychiatric evidence in the criminal justice system
  • Chapter 4 – Fitness to Plead – An overview of the fitness to plead procedure, including how it can be used in both the Magistrates’ and Crown Court, how it is established, and how an acts hearing is conducted
  • Chapter 5 – Insanity – How to establish insanity and the consequences of the return of the ‘special verdict’
  • Chapter 6 – The utility of psychiatric evidence in establishing self defence
  • Chapter 7 – Disposal of cases involving elements of mental health treatment – an overview of the options available to the court
  • Chapter 8 – Digital Forensics – the principles for obtaining digital evidence, powers to obtain digital material from within the UK and from abroad, principles of examining devices for digital material, issues arising from the disclosure of gitial material.
  • Chapter 9 – Cell Site Evidence – What is it? How it can be used? What are its limitations? How can it be challenged?
  • Chapter 10 – Modern Slavery – How can an expert assist with matters of modern slavery?
  • Chapter 11 – Gangs, Lyrics and Association – When can the prosecution rely on evidence of gang assocation and music lyrics?
  • Chapter 12 – An introduction to Forensic Science – How does forensic science fit within the criminal justice system?
  • Chapter 13 – Fingerprint Analysis – Recovering and examining fingerprints; cognitive bias in fingerprint examination.
  • Chapter 14 – Firearms – analysis of firearms and ballistics; rifling and the identification of firearms; firearm discharge residue.
  • Chapter 15 – The use of DNA in Criminal Proceedings – an overview of the science; sources of DNA; interpretation of DNA; establishing the evidential significance of a match; the prosecutor’s fallacy; limitations of the science
  • Chapter 16 – The use of statistics in forensic science – random match probability; liklihood theory; bayesian theorum; statistical evidence in court.
  • Chapter 17 – General tips when using expert evidence