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The reliability of witness memory was once again the focus of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon Monday, with expert witness Dr. Siegfried Sporer giving evidence a second time for the defense team of Hassan Oneissi.Sporer, an expert in forensic and criminal psychology at the University of Giessen, explained to the court that social factors can play a significant impact on the response of a witness attempting to identify a suspect, with marked differences when the suspect was "outgroup" or "ingroup," meaning from outside or inside the witness's social group respectively.The defense witness noted if suspects share features in common with the suspect, but individually look very distinct, this can unfairly direct the witness' attention.
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