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Criminal Proceedings: Evidence

Question for Attorney General

UIN 1453, tabled on 8 January 2020

To ask the Attorney General, what recent assessment he has made of how (a) material evidence brought forward by the prosecution and (b) unused material that fails to be disclosed to the defence is processed by the (i) police and (ii) Crown Prosecution Service.

Answered on

14 January 2020

There has been unprecedented joint commitment and focus from the police and the CPS to finding solutions to the problem of getting the provision of material evidence and disclosure right. Her Majesty’s Crown Prosecution Inspectorate (HMCPSI) recently published a report on disclosure in the Crown Court, which shows that CPS and the police have made improvements in almost all areas. However, as the report notes, these improvements are from a low baseline and it is therefore crucial that lasting improvements continue to be made. I am working to update my Guidelines on Disclosure in order to provide clear guidance to all practitioners, and embed the recommendations I made in my 2018 Review.

Answered by

Attorney General