Police And CPS Working Together ‘Ineffectively’

More needs to be done to ensure more effective working between the Crown Prosecution Service and the police, a recent inspection has found.

Phase one of the Criminal Justice Joint Inspection by His Majesty’s Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate and His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary Fire and Rescue Services into joint case building by the police and the CPS has shone a spotlight on technological and procedural inadequacies facing officers.

The report listed excessive workloads among both officers and lawyers, failing IT systems and lack of contact between the parties among problems in the system that are causing “ineffective working”.

Hampshire Police Federation Chair Zoë Wakefield said there is intent to improve working relationships, but that the CPS are just as cash-strapped as the police.

She said: “It is incredibly frustrating when police officers are trying to get hold of CPS to get advice when somebody’s in custody, and they can be sitting waiting for hours and hours and hours.

“I understand from Crown Prosecution Service, they’ve suffered with cuts as well and they’ve got real resourcing problems. But there does need to be improvement made and more investment in the CPS so that they’ve got more resources.

“We shouldn’t have the situation where we’ve got police officer time wasted because they are just sitting on a phone. This has a knock-on effect at court as well. We get to court sometimes and the poor prosecutor has literally been given the file that morning, and then they’re expected to prosecute on that case. It’s not fair on them. They should be given the file in plenty of time so that they can prepare before the morning of the hearing. I think there’s a lot that needs to be done all round.

“There’s definitely a desire for everybody to work well together and I think the police respect the knowledge and the experience of the CPS prosecutors, and hopefully they also respect the issues we have.”

Scroll to top