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More Or Less Thursday, 5 December, 2002, 16:13 GMT
Numbers in the dock
The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France
Under examination: how statistical evidence is used in court

More or Less was broadcast on Tuesday, 10 December, 2002 at 1600 GMT on BBC Radio 4.

 Click here to listen to the programme


Statistics are becoming increasingly important through genetic evidence, which relies on probabilities.

More or Less uncovers disturbing evidence of its own that courts neither understand the numbers nor welcome expert explanations.

A special report by mathematician Helen Joyce looks at cases influenced by statistical evidence and hears from those who've experienced or examined the ways courts deal with numbers.

We also look at proposals in the Queen's Speech to end trial by jury for complex financial fraud cases.

In all the fierce debate so far, no-one has identified what the nature of the complexity is, and so the raging public arguments remain hypothetical.

More or Less tries to get to the bottom line of financial complexity.

With Friday the 13th not far away, we also take a look at superstition.

And hear about one listener's experience of number synaesthesia.

Producer: Michael Blastland
Editor: Nicola Meyrick

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