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Browne v Dunn (1893), 6 R 67 (HL)


L appeared in court seeking an order against P to keep the peace; P said it was a sham and sued L for libel; L called witnesses to support his argument, P failed to cross-examine; P then argued that the witness should not be believed in their testimony.


If a party fails to challenge a witness about a specific point in cross-examination, is that party prevented from challenging the testimony on that point after the fact through argument?


If you intend to challenge a witness on specific points of evidence, you must first confront that witness on those points during cross-examination, so the witness has a chance to answer your challenge and provide additional information.


P failed to challenge the witness about a specific point in cross, and is therefore prevented from challenging the testimony after the fact though argument. It is unfair to a witness to adduce evidence that casts doubt on his veracity when he has not been given an opportunity to deal with that evidence

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