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Rape: Trials

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 24th October 2019.

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Photo of Richard Burgon Richard Burgon Shadow Lord Chancellor and Shadow Secretary of State for Justice

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what the (a) mean and (b) median waiting times were in weeks for trials where the defendants entered a not guilty plea for a rape charge in each Crown Court in England and Wales in (i) 2010 and (ii) 2018.

Photo of Chris Philp Chris Philp The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

The information requested about the waiting times for trials where the defendant has entered a not guilty plea for a rape charge in 2010 and 2018 can be found in the attached Excel document.

Due to small number of defendants pleading not guilty to these offences at individual Crown Courts, we have not supplied the average waiting times for courts where fewer than five defendants pleaded not guilty. Basing an average on such small numbers can skew the mean and result in the figures being unrepresentative.

Performance, demand and waiting times in the courts are constantly reviewed to balance sitting days with waiting times, disposals and receipts. Resources are adjusted when appropriate. Demand has been falling in recent years and sitting days have been reduced accordingly. The abolition of committal hearings in 2013 transferred the file preparation period from the magistrates’ court to the Crown Court and so comparisons between pre-2013 data and post-2013 data do not compare like with like.

We will continue to review demand and performance in the Crown Courts and will ensure they have the resource they require.

Table (Excel SpreadSheet, 17.08 KB)

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