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News - 25 October 2012

Police to prosecute minor offences without going through CPS

Home Secretary Teresa May will give new powers to police to prosecute minor offenders without having to refer the cases to the Criminal Prosecution Service. May told the ACPO autumn conference that the changes would cut back on police red tape.

The Home Secretary proposed changes extends existing powers for police and will enable them to prosecute an estimated 91,000 cases per year which are currently refered to the CPS.

The new measures will allow police to prosecute criminal damage cases under the value of £5,000, some alcohol and public order offences and driving without due care and attention. They will only be able to use the powers when defendants plead guilty.

Currently police can only prosecute uncontested, low-level traffic offences, such as speeding, driving without insurance, or failing to produce a driving licence. The changes will be trailed at nine police forces, and, if adopted, would mean that police-led prosecutions can now cover over half of all cases heard in Magistrates’ Courts.

Read the rest of this  item from The Daily Telegraph here

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