A Prasad direction is direction from the judge to the jury, informing them that they are entitled to find you not guilty at any time after the close of the Crown case without hearing your case, addresses or closing summary.
If the judge decides to give this direction to the jury it must be done very carefully. The judge must not interfere with the jury’s role, the results of the judge’s assessment of the Crown’s evidence. The direction is merely giving the jury the option, rather than instructing the jury, to find you not guilty without hearing any further evidence or submissions by the lawyers.
Why is it called a Prasad direction?
The direction came from the common law (law made by a judge) in South Australia. The name of the accused in that case was Prasad. Although this is a South Australian case, it has been adopted in NSW.
What is the effect of a Prasad direction?
By giving a Prasad direction the jury will have the option to find you not guilty without you presenting your case.
How can I get the judge to give a Prasad direction?
Your criminal defence lawyer can ask the judge to make a direction after the close of the police case. Your lawyer cannot force the judge to give the direction. Prasad directions are used very rarely and usually only where the evidence presented by the police is very weak.
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.