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Decision to Charge

Once the Police have completed their investigations, they will refer the case to the Crown Prosecution Service for advice on how to proceed. We will then make a decision on whether a suspect should be charged, and what that charge should be.

Find out more about private prosecutions

Sexual Offences

The Sexual Offences Act 2003 updated the law, much of which dated back to 1956.

The main provisions of the Act include the following:

  • Rape is widened to include oral penetration
  • Significant changes to the issue of consent
  • Specific offences relating to children under 13, 16 and 18
  • Offences to protect vulnerable persons with a mental disorder
  • Other miscellaneous offences
  • Strengthening the notification requirements and providing new civil preventative orders

Find out more about how we prosecute sexual offences

CPS Decision - Mohamed Al Fayed

17/02/2009

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has advised the Metropolitan Police Service that no criminal proceedings will be brought against Mr Mohamed Al Fayed following allegations of sexual assault.

Mr Rene Barclay, Director of Complex Casework, CPS London said: "During the course of a thorough police investigation, extensive enquiries were made and statements were taken from a number of people.

"Having reviewed those statements and other material submitted to us we concluded that, in the light of the conflicting evidence and the absence of sufficiently reliable accounts of crucial events, there was no realistic prospect of conviction."

Ends

  1. Media enquiries to CPS Press Office on 020 7710 6088. Out of hours pager: 07699781926
  2. The CPS was consulted in July 2008, a full file for advice was submitted in December 2008 and some supplemental material received in January 2009.
  3. The Crown Prosecution Service is the independent authority responsible for prosecuting criminal cases investigated by the police in England and Wales. It is responsible for:
    • Advising the police and reviewing the evidence on cases for possible prosecution
    • Deciding the charge where the decision is to prosecute
    • Preparing cases for court
    • Presenting cases at court
  4. The CPS consists of 42 Areas in total, each headed by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP). A telephone service, CPS Direct, provides out-of-hours advice and decisions to police officers across England and Wales. The CPS employs around 8,400 people and prosecuted 1,091,250 cases with an overall conviction rate of 85.1% in 2007-2008.

    More about the CPS

  5. The CPS, together with ACPO and media representatives, has developed a Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media. This sets out the type of prosecution material that will normally be released, or considered for release, together with the factors we will take into account when considering requests.

    Publicity and the Criminal Justice System protocol