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To veil or not to veil: detecting lies in the courtroom. A comment on Leach et al. (2016)

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For the past 40 years, lie detection has predominantly been studied in the context of police-suspect and investigative interviews. In their paper, Leach et al. 2016 examined whether niqabs or hijabs interfere with the trial judges’ ability to detect deception and concluded that veiling enhanced trial judges’ ability to make accurate veracity judgments. In this comment, we argue that the conclusions made by Leach et al. are based upon an inaccurate experimental court paradigm and suffer from methodological and analytical issues. It is our opinion that the applicability of their research findings to real-life court proceedings alongside potential changes to court practices and policies based on Leach et al. should be regarded as naïve and misinformed.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPsychiatry, Psychology and Law
Early online date9 Jan 2017
Publication statusEarly online - 9 Jan 2017


  • To Veil or Not to Veil

    Rights statement: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Psychiatry, Psychology and Law on 09/01/2017, available online:

    Accepted author manuscript (Post-print), 327 KB, PDF document

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