To ask the Attorney General, how many and what proportion of rape and serious sexual offence cases did not result in CPS charging advice (a) within 28 days, (b) within 2 months, (c) within 3 months, (d) within 4 months, (e) within 5 months, (f) in over 6 months and (g) in over 12 months of being referred to the CPS by the police in each of the last five years.
Rape and serious sexual offences are devastating crimes that have a profound impact on victims. Cases involving rape and serious sexual offences are some of the most challenging and complex cases that the CPS deals with. They involve very little corroborative evidence in comparison with other cases which can result in them taking longer to progress through the system. Where evidence submitted by the Police is sufficient to bring charges, the CPS will not hesitate to prosecute. The CPS works closely with the Police to ensure that cases are thoroughly investigated before charges are brought because it is in the interests of both victims and perpetrators that cases do not collapse mid-trial.
The CPS does not maintain a record of the number of days between referral and a non-charging outcome. However, the CPS does maintain a record of the average number of days taken from referral through to a decision to charge, and this data can be found in answer 266848.