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To Admit Or Not To Admit? – The Conundrum Around Illegally Obtained Evidence: A Comparative Study

To Admit Or Not To Admit? – The Conundrum Around Illegally Obtained Evidence: A Comparative Study Of The United States Of America, Australia And India

Anushka Borkar, B.A., LL.B. (Hons.), National Academy of Legal Studies and Research (NALSAR, Hyderabad)


At times, preserving the judicial integrity and achieving a factually correct outcome appear diametrically opposed objectives, raising a pertinent question - “Does the end justify the means?” This dilemma is particularly manifest when a party to a dispute produces a document obtained by illegal means, through wiretapping or hacking or through illegal search and seizure or any other method. While the exclusion of illegally obtained evidence is advocated to protect individual rights and reinforce judicial integrity; the Court is often criticised for its excessive desire to be factually correct as opposed to serving the purpose of justice. The recent past has been mired in this conundrum, which raises a pertinent question as to the admissibility of such evidence in the courtroom. In India, there is a deep lacuna, especially after the recognition of the right to privacy as a fundamental right, which is in direct conflict to the production of illegally obtained evidence. There has been a marked increase in parties seeking to adduce evidence that has been obtained illegally. The paper seeks to explore the admissibility of illegally obtained evidence in criminal proceedings in the United States, Australia and India by presenting a comparative analysis of the position in each of these countries.

Indian Journal of Law and Legal Research

Abbreviation: IJLLR

ISSN: 2582-8878


Accessibility: Open Access

License: Creative Commons 4.0

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​All research articles published in The Indian Journal of Law and Legal Research are fully open access. i.e. immediately freely available to read, download and share. Articles are published under the terms of a Creative Commons license which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the authors. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of the IJLLR or its members. The designations employed in this publication and the presentation of material therein do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the IJLLR.

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