Originally posted by robbie carrobie
is this the same in America, do you need two witnesses before you can go to court?
There is a difference between civil and criminal actions. I am definitely an amateur but in the US you can sue anyone for anything without corroboration if you can convince a lawyer (or in small claims court without a lawyer) but you stand the risk of countersuits and/or having to pay court costs and for your opponent's legal fees if you lose. The standard is preponderance of evidence which would imply more than one piece of evidence.
In criminal law a public jurisdiction (state DA or Federal) has to decide if the complaint is a criminal act and if there is enough evidence to go to trial. Just about anything can be corroborating, it doesn't have to be a second witness, it can be video footage, fingerprints, DNA, bruises on the victim, finding the stolen goods at the accused's house etc. The standard is beyond a reasonable doubt which implies even more than in a civil case.
Courts can throw out or refuse to hear cases they deem frivolous.Look into "frivolous litigation." Of course appeals can be pursued.
I wonder if your post here is related to some similar discussions on Spirituality. I suggest that you search on "mandated (or mandatory) reporter." In certain situations a "mandated reporter" is legally required to report his suspicion of a crime to the police even if no one else suspects it. It is then up to the police to determine if an arrest and trial is warranted. They would certainly want some corroborating evidence. Clearly in the case of child abuse, if a mandated reporter made a report, the alleged victim would be interviewed and would serve as corroboration.