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David Duckenfield

Attorney General written question – answered on 7th January 2020.

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Photo of Christopher Chope Christopher Chope Conservative, Christchurch

To ask the Attorney General, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of the (a) first, (b) second and (c) third prosecution against Mr David Duckenfield on manslaughter in relation to the Hillsborough tragedy; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Michael Ellis Michael Ellis The Solicitor-General

This was a complex and harrowing case. Every effort was made to build a robust case for prosecution, in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors and the case was handled by a team of experienced specialist prosecutors.

As it involved the prosecution of more than one defendant, it is not possible to state definitively the total costs in relation to the prosecution of David Duckenfield alone. In June 2017, David Duckenfield, the police commander in charge of safety during the Hillsborough stadium disaster, was charged with gross negligence manslaughter. At trial in April 2019, the jury was unable to reach a verdict against David Duckenfield, while a second defendant, Graham Mackrell, was convicted of a health and safety offence. In November 2019, after a retrial at Preston Crown Court, the jury found David Duckenfield not guilty.

The CPS estimates the cost of legal counsel fees and other prosecution costs for the prosecution of both David Duckenfield and Graham Mackrell to be approximately £1.97 million. CPS records do not capture the cost of the time spent by internal CPS staff on this case.

The CPS cannot comment on costs incurred by the police, HM Courts and Tribunals, or any other partners in this case. Nor can the CPS comment on the private prosecution referred to in the question, which was brought against David Duckenfield by the Hillsborough Family Support Group in 2000.

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