The Use of Gang Affiliation as Evidence of Bad Character

Oliver Mosley of QEBHW examines gang affiliation as evidence of bad character.

The word gang can be a powerful tool in the hands of a skilled prosecutor. The allowances within the Criminal Justice Act means juries are now often furnished with evidence about gangs, their membership and their activities.

This issue is not going away. The news now regularly reports on the 'markers' used by the Police to demonstrate gang involvement, from clothing to music. But there is a danger that the innocent actions of young people is being used as criminal evidence.

In this article, Oliver Mosley of QEBHW examines gang affiliation as evidence of bad character and the post-CJA authorities. He discusses the trend towards gang evidence being heard and the challenge this poses for the defence, as well as the potential pitfalls inherent with this kind of evidence.

Next week, we will release Part I of our 4-part podcast series on one particular type of gang affiliation evidence: drill music. In each part you'll hear Oliver discuss the use of drill music in criminal trials with both senior and junior counsel in Chambers who have experience of the same.

If you'd like to contribute to the discussion, please send your questions, comments or experiences to us by emailing

You can access the article here.

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