Document examiners analyse material to determine details such as whose handwriting or signature is on a document, whether some elements of a document were added later than others as well as whether a particular machine produced a certain document.
Handwriting and Signatures
Document examiners believe that no two persons’ handwriting are identical. A person develops habits and styles in their handwriting which are unique to that person. A document examiner will compare a source document (a document that is relevant to a criminal investigation) with other documents said to have been written by the same person. The document examiner can provide an opinion on whether they were written by the same person.
Additions to Documents
It is sometimes not safe to assume that all elements of a document were added at the same time. Document examiners can use details of the printing on a document to provide an opinion about any changes or additions that have been made since the document was created. This can be critical if, for example, a document has been doctored since it was signed.
Identifying the Machine that Produced a Document
This evidence is particularly relevant to older documents, where the tell-tale markings left by particular photocopiers, printers or typewriters could allow a document to be traced to a particular machine, and therefore its operator. This evidence can still be relevant to today’s matters, particularly where a faulty machine is involved, or analysis is required of older documents such as property title deeds or historic financial documents.
How Can Document Examination Help in my Defence?
Criminal matters can turn on the expert evidence of document examiners. Whether or not a signature was forged, a detail was added to a document after its production, or the whereabouts of its generation can determine the innocence of an accused person. Armstrong Legal maintains relationships with the best document examiners so that this critical evidence can be harnessed in the defence of its clients.
WHERE TO NEXT?
If you suspect that you may be under investigation, or if you have been charged with an offence, it is vital to get competent legal advice as early as possible. Our lawyers are highly specialised in criminal law and will be able to guide you through the process while dealing with the various authorities related to your matter.