Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and False Confessions

TeinFASD False Confessiona Pora spent more than twenty years incarcerated for the rape and murder of Auckland woman, Susan Burdett. His confession to the crime was the central piece of evidence that convicted him.

But the highest court in the Commonwealth, the UK’s Privy Council recently found that Pora’s confession was unreliable and that the case amounted to a miscarriage of justice. Key to that finding was evidence from specialists in Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).

How often is FASD considered a factor in the Australian criminal justice system?

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