On the assumption that the appellant is entitled to

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On the assumption that the appellant is entitled to succeed on either of the first two issues, were there such “exceptional circumstances” for the reception of the evidence that would not conflict with the basic purpose and policy of s 570D? Initially, the appellant sought an order for a retrial. On the return of the appeal, his counsel asked this Court to direct a judgment of acquittal, in the event that the foregoing issues were decided in his favour. The lockup conversation was not an “interview” Textual meaning of interview : In an elliptical way, s 570D of the Code makes it a precondition to the reception into evidence of an (100) See Criminal Appeals Act 2004 (WA), s 30(4), formerly the Code, s 689(1); cf Nicholls (2005) 219 CLR 196 at 281-282 [235]. 175 232 CLR 138] CARR V WESTERN AUSTRALIA Kirby J 115 116 117
“admission”, made by a suspect to a member of the Police Force, that it should be made during a recorded “interview”. This is necessary because s 570D(2) renders such admissions “not … admissible” unless, primarily, “the evidence is a videotape on which is a recording of the admission” (101). “Videotape” is defined (102) to mean “any videotape on which is recorded an interview”. Undoubtedly, the questions and answers between Detective Senior Constable Richards and the appellant, in the interview room, recorded on videotape, amounted to such an “interview”. But was the conversation in the lockup properly so described? Obviously, the mere fact that a conversation is recorded on video film cannot alone render it an “interview” for the purpose of the provisions of the Code. An “interview” is a particular type of conversation. The mode of recording, if any, is external to the character of the communication. Many “interviews” are not recorded in such a way. The search is, therefore, for the essential character of an “interview” of the kind that meets the requirements of s 570D. It is not, as such, for the medium in which it is recorded. In ordinary speech, the word “interview” connotes an exchange between persons that observes some degree of formality or structure and mutuality. The primary definition in the Macquarie Dictio- nary (103) is: “a meeting of persons face to face, especially for formal conference in business, etc, or for radio and television entertainment, etc.” Formality is likewise included in the primary definition given in the Oxford English Dictionary (104). The Chambers English Dictio- nary (105) describes an “interview” as “a formal meeting”. Thus, normally, the word connotes a face to face meeting having features of a formal interchange between participants. A “conversation” need not have these features. But an “interview” does. This Court can, as it pleases, dismiss the argument that “interview” when used in the Code involves an element of formality and structure with mutuality between the participants in the communication in question. However, it must realise that it does so in the face of the unanimous opinion of the great dictionaries of the English language.

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