HMA v Raymond Kyle 2018

Mr Raymond Kyle was accused of being concerned with the supply of Class A drugs, namely heroin. However, he challenged the admissibility of evidence to the Appeal Court in his case in relation to the recovery of bags of brown powder found by police in his home. This followed a forced entry to the property, for the “preservation of life.”

He has had his appeal refused as the Appeal Court has upheld the Sheriffs decision that the evidence was admissible and the entry to the property was lawful. There was a debate in July 2018 in relation to the preliminary issue of admissibility of certain evidence as this was challenged by the defence.

This related to the two bags of drugs found. There bags were found after the police entered the house looking for a missing person. At the Debate PC Sweetin gave evidence in this respect and stated there was a risk to the stated person life and there was threats made against him. The officers entered the property on the basis of the common law that they are allowed to do so in such circumstances.

The Sheriff stated that the officers acted in good faith and therefore this evidence was admissible. The appellant however argued that the actions which led to this discovery were “neither reasonable nor necessary”. However, Lord Justice Clerk concluded on appeal: “In assessing the actions of the police it remains relevant that they were not investigating a crime, as is the fact that they were acting in good faith in this regard.” The Appeal Judges concluded that there was a minimal nature of intrusion and therefore the evidence was admissible.