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Inside the jury room

After the judge has summed up the case, the jury goes to the jury room to discuss the verdict. The jury must decide whether or not the prosecution has proved beyond all reasonable doubt that the accused is guilty of the crime(s) with which he/she has been charged. 'Beyond reasonable doubt' means that if there are two reasons given in the case and both are possible explanations for what happened, taken together with the evidence presented, the jury should give the accused the benefit of the doubt.

Jurors can bring any notes they took during the case with them and a copy of the charges and exhibits given to them.

The jury's decision must be based on the evidence and on the directions given by the judge. The jury cannot take account of what might happen to the accused if he/she is convicted.

During the deliberations, the jury is not allowed to communicate with the outside world at all, except to send notes to the court registrar asking for the judge to explain the law or to remind them of the details of the evidence.

When the jury has reached an agreement, they return to court where the foreman/woman is asked for the verdict.