Tuesday, July 17, 2007


Chandra is regularly asked to provide specialist advice about technical evidence to assist trial Counsel and solicitors in cases he is not instructed in, especially on instructions to experts and finding the right expert (formally or informally depending on the case).  Chandra frequently uses the computer analytical tools he has developped himself (audio, visual, financial, etc) to challenge prosecution/Respondent experts and to instruct his own experts on specific issues.   Based on his academic background in science and scientific methodology, Chandra particularly specialises in:
    1. DNA evidence and its interaction with other evidence (such as blood, other forensics, scientific procedures, etc) and has won cases directly challenging billion to one identification matches;
    2. Straight scientific evidence (such as MSA drug contamination evidence on banknotes or other items - see article published in Archbold News);
    3. Evidence from computers or computer records (such as identifying vulnerabilities in material recovered from computers);
    4. Financial and record-keeping evidence – capitalising on my previous experience as a bookkeeper in plcs and limited companies and including analysis of very large amounts of financial data and bank statements;
    5. Challenges to methodologies used by experts by comparison with “proper” scientific methodology and the interface between this and current legal tests (e.g. the Daubert/R v T probability matching debate, etc).
    Below are examples of specific expertise I have used in cases or developped over the years.  
  1. R v O – detailed analysis of CCTV and bank security evidence using methods devised by Counsel using video editing software (showing errors in timing and recording) and bank computer records and system (demonstrating potential flaws in transaction records) including cross-examination of expert witnesses and bank staff about flaws in the banks computer and security system.
  2. R v R – detailed analysis of expert evidence relating to credit card fraud and recovery of computer records. Submissions on failures in methodology such that the expert was not an expert failed but several years later the partnership the expert came from was exposed by the CPS as having serious failings in methodology (Soham Child pornography case).
  3. R v S – detailed analysis of expert evidence of drug contamination of banknotes resulting in its exclusion, an article in Archbold News and nationwide requests for assistance in cases where this evidence was relied on by the Crown.  Subsequently this evidence was evaluated by the Government's Forensic Science Regulator whose concerns and caveats very much matched those of Chandra's article and whose report is essential reading for any cases involving this evidence.
  4. R v M – briefed to provide specialist advice in terrorism case on how to challenge evidence recovered from computers (including standard software flaws).
  5. R v U – s.41 Restriction Order case where the relevance of the Psychopathy Checklist Revised (PCL-R) test score was challenged in assessing “risk of serious harm” (or dangerousness) including detailed cross-examination of Rampton psychiatrist.
  6. R v B - Analysis of witness testimony of alleged rape victim with unrelated incident of repressed memory syndrome.
  7. W v R – employment case where Counsel with IT expert devised method of converting printouts of very large amount of email threads (5000+ over 5 years) into Excel such that they could be ordered by date, receipt, subject, sender, receiver or person copied to, and could be re-converted to Word in chronological order. Material was also put in a form that could be easily computer searched during the trial.
  8. 10 years of experience prior to being called, and while a barrister, of preparation and analysis of accounts for limited companies, plcs and various organisations (charities and unincorporated associations).
  9. 20 years of experience of all aspects of software (and some hardware) including programming (on a limited basis) in Excel, Visual Basic, BASIC, Access and SQL, project management for software programmes, running a software company and many other related aspects.

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