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5. How does the jury give its verdict?

Once the jury has reached its verdict, the foreman of the jury will inform the usher, who will inform the Court. The parties will be called back to Court, and the Court clerk will ask the foreman of the jury to state the verdict in open court.

Juries must reach a majority verdict as to whether the accused is or is not guilty of the offence. In a jury of seven members, the Court will accept a unanimous verdict, a verdict of 6 – 1 or 5 – 2. If the jury cannot reach a majority verdict, the Judge may ask them to retire again and give them more time to discuss, but the Judge must not put pressure on them to reach a majority verdict. If at the end the jury still cannot reach a majority verdict, the Judge will have to dismiss the jury and decide whether or not to order a re-trial before another panel of jury.

For more details about the duty and eligibility of jurors, please go the Judiciary webpage.

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