Terrorism trials trigger general attitudinal biases and prejudices in jurors that are unrelated to the specific evidence in any particular case. Awareness of their potential influence can assist trial judges and lawyers to anticipate these types of reactions and to address them. Trial features that are within the control of the court and legal counsel are monitoring of the evidence that is admitted, preparing appropriate jury instructions, and guiding juries through deliberation. The results of this research project suggested that expanded use of visual technologies in court processes is unlikely to undermine the rights of the defendant to a fair trial, particularly if the materials are carefully prepared and jurors are adequately instructed. The innovative use of neutral facilitators in the jury deliberation room to assist jurors in addressing key issues presented produced very promising results. The real risk to the fairness of terrorism trials may come from legislation abrogating the right to trial by jury. The ongoing participation of lay jurors in the criminal justice process is perceived to increase the fairness of the justice system, and as a key feature of democratic governance. Juries, like any human institution, are fallible, but even when the community faces alleged terrorist threats, juries may continue to play a central role in protecting liberty.
|Title of host publication||Juries, science and popular culture in the age of terror|
|Subtitle of host publication||The case of the Sydney bomber|
|Editors||David Tait, Jane Goodman-Delahunty|
|Place of Publication||United Kingdom|
|Number of pages||13|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|