68 Procedure if person charged with offence

(1)

This subsection applies to a responsible coroner in relation to a death who—

(a)

has been informed that some person has been, or may be, charged with a criminal offence relating to the death or its circumstances; and

(b)

is satisfied that to open or (as the case requires) proceed with an inquiry might prejudice the person.

(2)

A coroner to whom subsection (1) applies may—

(a)

postpone opening an inquiry into the death; or

(b)

open an inquiry into the death and then adjourn it; or

(c)

adjourn an inquiry already opened into the death.

(3)

A coroner who has under subsection (2) postponed or adjourned an inquiry must not open or proceed with it until criminal proceedings against the person have been finally concluded (as defined in subsection (6)).

(4)

Subsections (2) and (3) do not limit or affect sections 44 and 45 of the Births, Deaths, Marriages, and Relationships Registration Act 1995 (which require the coroner to notify a Registrar of the death).

(5)

Despite subsection (3), a coroner who has under subsection (2) postponed or adjourned an inquiry may later open or resume it if satisfied that—

(a)

the person is no longer to be charged with a criminal offence relating to the death or its circumstances; or

(b)

to open or resume it would not prejudice the person charged, or thought likely to be charged, with a criminal offence relating to the death or its circumstances.

(6)

Criminal proceedings are finally concluded for the purposes of this section if no appeal (or, as the case requires, no further appeal) can be made in the course of the proceedings unless the High Court, Court of Appeal, or Supreme Court grants an extension of time.

Compare: 1988 No 111 s 28(1), (2), (4), (8)

Section 68(1): amended, on 21 July 2016, by section 44 of the Coroners Amendment Act 2016 (2016 No 29).

Section 68(4): amended, on 24 January 2009, by section 47 of the Births, Deaths, Marriages, and Relationships Registration Amendment Act 2008 (2008 No 48).