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Criminal Procedure Act, 1977 (Act No. 51 of 1977)

Chapter 22 : Conduct of Proceedings

159C. Technical requirements for use of audiovisual link


(1) For the purposes of proceedings in terms of section 159A, both the court point and the remote point must be equipped with facilities that enable all appropriate persons—
(a) at the court point to see and hear a person appearing before the court or making a submission or any other appropriate person at the remote point and to follow the proceedings; and
(b) at the remote point to see and hear all appropriate persons at the court point and to follow the proceedings.


(a) In the event of—
(i) an interruption of an audiovisual link;
(ii) an audiovisual link being of a poor quality which, in the opinion of the court, is not in the interests of justice to continue the proceedings by way of audiovisual link; or
(iii) any of the facilities referred to in subsection (1) malfunctioning,

the court must, subject to paragraph (b), direct that the matter stand down and cause the accused person to be brought physically before the court on the day in question.

(b) If it is not reasonably practicable to bring the accused person to court on the day, as provided for in paragraph (a), the court must, prior to the expiry of the existing court order for the accused person’s detention, postpone the proceedings in the absence of the accused person, to the next court day.


(3) The Minister may make any regulations necessary to give effect to the technical requirements referred to in subsection (1).


(4) A court may, in order to ensure a fair trial, give any directions in any case as it may deem necessary, which may not be inconsistent with any provision of this Act or any regulation made thereunder.


[Section 159C inserted by section 1 of Act No. 65 of 2008 in respect of certain magisterial districts]