Fresh Analysis of Contraband for Determination of Chemical Composition

Fresh Analysis of Contraband for Determination of Chemical Composition Case Laws Criminal Appeal Criminal Law Disclosure Fresh Analysis Knowledge - Criminal Law Lahore High Court Litigation & Arbitration Narcotics Presumption Solutions - Criminal Law Mr. Justice Raja Shahid Mehmood Abbasi and Mr. Justice Qazi Muhammad Amin Ahmed in their judgment has decided the issue regarding fresh analysis of contraband for determination of chemical composition in Criminal Appeal No. 49 of 2016.

1. The appellant is confronting indictment before learned Judge, Special Court (CNS) Rawalpindi; he was found in possession of 3 canes, each containing 27 litters of Acetic Anhydride, a contraband designated as psychotropic substance under the Control of Narcotic Substances Act, 1997. The trial is in progress and evidence of recovery witnesses has already been recorded; the Report of Chemical Examiner is before the Court. Being dissatisfied with the report of Chemical Examiner, the appellant moved an application on 9-6-2014 for fresh analysis of the contraband for the purposes of determination of its chemical composition, it was declined way back on 2-7-2014. On the request of the appellant, case property was opened and according to the learned counsel for the appellant, the stuff attributed to the appellant was harmless material with no psychotropic characters as benignly felled on the hand of no other than the learned counsel himself and this according to him warranted a new analysis. This second attempt failed as the Court declined the same vide impugned order dated 2-1-2016.

2. Learned counsel for the appellant contends that it would be in the interest of justice that the seized contraband be sent to any other laboratory other than the Punjab Forensic Science Agency, at the expense of the appellant.

3. Heard.

4. Prosecution of offences is a State attribute; State functionaries and Institutions are tasked to carry out the job; there is presumption of genuineness to such pursuits. These powers cannot be delegated to private enterprises chosen by a person confronting indictment. Any flaw or defect in the Forensic Report cannot be pressed into service for fresh analysis as onus to drive home the charge is on the prosecution and an accused is not required to establish his innocence through such methodologies. It has been of late observed that such requests particularly in cases of narcotics are made for opening of samples for the purposes of their weighing and analysis afresh, invariably bringing embarrassment to the prosecution to the benefit of accused. It is mind boggling as to how the accused in such cases denying the charge and recovery, receive knowledge about flaws and discrepancies therein, that too at a belated stage the only irresistible conclusion is that such exercises are undertaken after manipulation with the case property with the help of unscrupulous staff in the Courts and at the Mallkhana, assigned safe custody thereof. Stream of justice must run pure and clean; therefore, Courts must be very cautious before entertaining such requests and must insist for disclosure of source of knowledge prompting these moves. Recovery of contraband allegedly at the instance of the appellant way back on 20-12-2012 is denied at the bar and so is indictment before the trial Court. Forensic analysis of the contraband was undertaken soon after registration of the case; it is really intriguing as to how the appellant became suspicious about the psychotropic character of the stuff attributed to him as late as November, 2015. Seemingly, there is more than what meets the eye. Even otherwise, the appellant having denied the charge, no onus is cast upon him within the contemplation of Article-119 of the Qanun-e-Shahadat Order, 1984 to discharge any responsibility which may necessitate the proposed exercise.

5. Dismissed in limine.

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