Rape is a horrific crime which has a significant and profound impact on victims. It is vital to ensure that cases are investigated thoroughly in order to bring them to justice. To achieve this, it is necessary in many cases to seek further information before a prosecutor is able to determine whether or not to charge. This process ensures that cases are as robust as possible once they reach the court.
In 2017-18, cases were referred back to the Police for 61% of suspects in cases recorded as rape in the system. Whilst one situation where the CPS may refer a case back to the Police is to request further evidence, it could also be in instances when the Police have sought ‘early investigative advice’ from the CPS to assist in determining the evidence required for a charge. It is not possible to separate cases where the CPS has requested further evidence and when the Police have sought early investigative advice.