|Part of the law series|
|Types of evidence|
|Hearsay and exceptions|
|Other common law areas|
A lie is a statement used intentionally for the purpose of deception. The practice of communicating a lie is called lying; a person who communicates a lie may be termed a liar. Lies may be employed to serve a variety of instrumental, interpersonal, or psychological functions for the individuals who use them. Generally, the term "lie" carries a negative connotation and, depending on the context, a person who communicates a lie may be subject to social, legal, religious, or criminal sanctions.
In England, if the prosecution seeks to rely on the fact the defendant lied (to police, for example), it is sometimes necessary for the judge to give the jury what is known as a Lucas direction.
A Lucas direction is not used where the prosecution attempts to show the defendant committed the crime, and, if the jury finds the defendant guilty, this would mean the defendant had lied. The direction "comes into play when the prosecution says, or the judge envisages that the jury may say, that the lie is evidence against the accused, in effect using it as an implied admission of guilt .... this is quite distinct from the run of the mill case in which the defence case is contradicted by the evidence of the prosecution witnesses in such a way as to make it necessary for the prosecution to say ... that the defendant's account is untrue and indeed deliberately and knowingly false". It is appropriate for a judge to give a Lucas direction:
A Lucas direction has three parts: