Our accountant, who is foreigner stole, our company’s money and fled to his home country. He was arrested there by the international police. After the arrest, he made a suspect statement to a police officer who is a citizen of his home country and he confessed stealing the company’s money. We would like to know if under the laws of Tanzania, a confession statement of a suspect recorded in a foreign country by a foreign law enforcement agent can be admitted in Tanzanian Courts.
Ordinarily a suspect statement made to a police officer is admissible under section 27(1) of the Evidence Act if he/she voluntarily implicates himself or herself with the crime he or she is accused of, which seems to be the case here. Section 57 and 58 of the Criminal Procedure Act prescribes the procedure to be applied by a police officer when recording a suspect statement. However, both laws recognise police officers who are members of the Tanzania Police Force only. Police officers who are members of law enforcement agents in other foreign jurisdictions are not recognised by both the Evidence Act and Criminal Procedure Act as police officers capable of recording a suspect statement under section 27(1) of the Evidence Act and section 57 and 58 the Criminal Procedure Act.
Admission of a suspect statement recorded in a foreign jurisdiction by foreign police officers can be admitted under section 38 of the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act [Cap. 254 R.E 2019] not as a confessional statement made to a police officer but as evidence obtained from a foreign country. For that suspect statement to be admitted under section 38 as evidence from a foreign country, it must first be signed by a police officer who wrote it and authenticated by oath of such police officer.