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The Role of The Crown Prosecution Service

The Crown Prosecution Service is the government department responsible for prosecuting criminal cases investigated by the police in England and Wales.

As the principal prosecuting authority in England and Wales, we are responsible for:

  • advising the police on cases for possible prosecution
  • reviewing cases submitted by the police
  • determining any charges in more serious or complex cases
  • preparing cases for court
  • presenting cases at court

Find out more about the role of the Crown Prosecution Service

CPS Advocate Panel Scheme


Keith Milburn, Head of the CPS Court Business Unit, said: "In May 2011 the Crown Prosecution Service launched its Advocate Panel scheme and invited advocates to submit written applications to join the Advocate Panel. About 3,000 advocates have applied.

"The CPS is currently concluding the assessment phase of the scheme and about 93 per cent of assessments have now been completed. We are planning for the remaining assessments to be completed in the next two weeks.

"The results of the scheme will be notified directly to applicants by email but will not be announced before the start of December 2011. Further updates will be provided via the CPS website on the actual date that results will be announced.

"The Advocate Panel is a new process for the selection of external advocates to undertake prosecution advocacy on behalf of the CPS. All advocates being instructed to undertake prosecution work in the Crown Court (and Higher Courts) from 2012 must be members of the new, quality-controlled CPS Advocate Panel."