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SUPREME COURT ACT
   
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Part 5

Appeals in Criminal Cases from the Court of Appeal

25. This Part shall apply to the exercise of the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to hear appeals from decisions of the Court of Appeal in criminal proceedings in which an appeal has been brought to that Court from some other court.

26. On the hearing of an appeal under this Part, the Supreme Court may exercise any power that could have been exercised by the Court of Appeal or may order the case to be retried by a court of competent jurisdiction.

Part 5

Procedure

27. (1) Where a person desires to appeal to the Supreme Court he shall give notice of appeal or notice of his application for leave to appeal in such manner as may be directed by Rules of Court within the period prescribed by subsection (2) of this section that is applicable to the case.

(2) The periods prescribed for the giving of notice of appeal or notice of application for leave to appeal are-

(a) in an appeal in a civil case, fourteen days in an appeal against an interlocutory decision and three months in an appeal against a final decision;

(b) in an appeal in a criminal case, thirty days from the date of the decision appealed against.

(3) Where an application for leave to appeal is made in the first instance to the court below, a person making such application shall, in addition to the period prescribed by subsection (2) of this section, be allowed a further period of fifteen days, from the date of the hearing of the application by the court below, to make an application to the Supreme Court.

(4) The Supreme Court may extend the periods prescribed in subsection (2) of this section.


28. The Supreme Court may at any time assign counsel to an appellant in any appeal or proceedings preliminary or incidental to an appeal in which, in the opinion of the court, it appears desirable in the interests of justice that the appellant should have legal aid, and that he has not sufficient means to enable him to obtain that aid.


29. In the exercise of its appellate jurisdiction, the Supreme Court may if it thinks it necessary or expedient in the interest of justice-

(a) ordering the production of any document, exhibit, or other thing connected with the proceedings, the production of which appears to it necessary for the determination of the case; and

(b) order any witnesses who would have been compellable witnesses at the trial to attend and be examined before the Court, whether they were or were not called at the trial, or order the examination of any such witnesses to be conducted in manner provided by rules of court, or, in the absence of rules of court making provision on that behalf, as it may direct, before any judge of the Court or before any officer of the Court or other person appointed by the Court for the purpose, and allow the admission of any depositions so taken as evidence before the Court; and

(c) receive the evidence, if tendered, of any witness (including the appellant) who is a competent but not compellable witness and, if the appellant makes an application for the purpose, of the husband or wife of the appellant, in cases where the evidence of the husband or wife could not have been given at the trial except on such an application; and

(d) where any question arising on the appeal involves prolonged examination of documents or accounts, or any scientific or local investigation, which cannot in the opinion of the Court conveniently be conducted before the Court, order the reference of the question in manner provided by rules of court, or, in the absence of rules of court making provision in that behalf, as it may direct, for enquiry and report of any such commissioner appointed by the Court, and act upon the report of any such commissioner so far as it thinks fit to adopt it; and exercise in relation to the proceedings of the Court any other powers which may for the time being be prescribed by rules of court and issue any warrants necessary for enforcing the orders or sentence of the Court:

Provided that in no case shall any sentence be increased by reason of or in consideration of any evidence that was not given at the trial.


30. (1) On the hearing of an appeal in a criminal case an appellant, notwithstanding that he is in custody, shall be entitled to be present, if he desires it, except where the appeal is on some ground involving a question of law alone but, in that case, and on an application for leave to appeal and on any proceedings preliminary or incidental to an appeal, shall not be entitled to be present, except where rules of court provide that he shall have the right to be present or where the Supreme Court gives him leave to be present.

(2) The power of the Supreme Court to pass any sentence under this Act may be exercised notwithstanding that the appellant is for any reason not present.

(3) The right of an appellant who is in custody to be present at the hearing of his appeal shall be subject to his paying all expenses of and incidental to his transfer to and from the place where the Supreme Court sits for the determination of his appeal:

Provided that the Court may direct that he be brought before the Court in any case where, in the opinion of the Court, his presence is advisable for the due determination of the appeal, in which event such expenses as aforesaid shall be defrayed out of Consolidated Revenue Fund.

(4) An appellant who does not appear at the hearing of his appeal or application for leave to appeal by counsel may present his appeal and argument in writing, and any appeal or argument so presented shall be considered by the Supreme Court.


31. (1) The Supreme Court may, if it thinks fit, on the application of an appellant admit the appellant to bail pending the determination of his appeal.

(2) The time during which an appellant, pending the determination of his appeal, is admitted to bail shall not count as part of any term of imprisonment under his sentence and, any imprisonment under the sentence of an appellant, whether it is the sentence passed by the court of trial or the sentence passed by the Court of Appeal or the sentence of the Supreme Court, shall, subject to any directions which may be given by the Court, be deemed to be resumed or to begin to run, as the case requires, from the day on which he is received into prison under the sentence.

(3) In any case in which the appellant has received special treatment pending the hearing of his appeal in accordance with the provisions of any law relating to prisons, the Supreme Court shall fix the day from which the sentence shall be deemed to begin to run.


32. If it appears to the Registrar that any notice of an appeal against a conviction purporting to be on a ground of appeal which involves a question of law alone, does not show any substantial ground of appeal, the Registrar may refer the appeal to any Justice of the Supreme Court and such Justice may if he is of the same opinion, direct the Registrar to refer the appeal to the Supreme Court for summary determination, and, when the case is so referred, the Court may, if it considers that the appeal is frivolous or vexatious, and can be determined without adjourning the same for a full hearing, dismiss the appeal summarily, without calling on any person to attend the hearing or to appear for the Government thereon.

Part 6

Miscellaneous and repeals

33. The Supreme Court, when a question as to the interpretation of the Constitution has been referred to that Court under section 213 of the Constitution, may cause the case to be sent back for amendment and judgment shall be delivered after it has been amended.

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