Here's what testifying 'in camera' actually means

The Women's Legal Centre (WLC) has clarified what it means to testify in camera, in light of the Dros rape trial.

The seven-year-old Dros rape victim was called to testify against Nicholas Ninow on Wednesday.

However, WLC attorney Bronwyn Pithey says 'in camera' is not the correct term to describe how the minor testified.

Pithey explains that 'in camera' is a legal term that means in private, without media or public presence.

In such cases, complainant appears in court before the magistrate, prosecutor, the defence counsel and the accused.

When we talk about a testimony being 'in camera', it doesn't actually mean in front of camera. It's a Latin term that means in secret.

Bronwyn Pithey - WLC attorney

She will give evidence, but anyone who is not necessary to the proceedings will be told to leave the courtroom.

Bronwyn Pithey - WLC attorney

In the case of the seven-year-old Dros rape victim, the child testified via CCTV with the support of an intermediary.

Pithey explains that complainants, often minors, give evidence through an intermediary and through CCTV systems in a separate room from the courtroom.

The witness is put in a totally separate room to the courtroom. The court and the external room are connected via a CCTV system.

Bronwyn Pithey - WLC attorney

Listen to the legal explanation on Afternoon Drive with Joanne Joseph:


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