One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A witness who is antagonistic to the party calling them and, being unwilling to tell the truth, may have to be cross-examined by the party.
- ‘The Court also held that the Magistrate's decision not to declare the police officer a hostile witness was discretionary and did not involve an error of law.’
- ‘The only evidence inculpating him in the offence was that of a 17-year-old person who was declared a hostile witness at trial in order to extract the evidence inculpating him.’
- ‘He would then step down as counsel and become the hostile witness for the defence.’
- ‘In my amended written submission before the honourable court I pointed out 52 instances where the primary judge accepted the lies of hostile witnesses as truth and totally disregarded any evidence which was in my favour.’
- ‘It was not clear, however, whether a previous inconsistent statement could be proved against a hostile witness, by calling other witnesses, in the event he denied making it.’
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