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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.

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Hate Crime

Hate crime is any criminal offence committed against a person or property that is motivated by hostility towards someone based on their disability, race, religion, gender identity or sexual orientation:

  • race, colour, ethnic origin, nationality or national origins
  • religion
  • gender or gender identity
  • sexual orientation
  • disability
  • age

Find out more about how we prosecute hate crime

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 authorises racially aggravated charge against Sunderland fan


Greater Manchester Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has advised police to charge a Sunderland football fan with a racially aggravated public order offence following an incident at the Wigan Athletic and Sunderland match on 28 November 2009.

Mark Humphries, Wigan Divisional Crown Prosecutor, said: "Having reviewed the file passed to me by Greater Manchester Police, I can confirm that I have authorised that John Andrew Davison, 26, from Chester-le-Street, be charged with a racially aggravated offence under Section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986.

"The charge relates to an incident, near to the DW Stadium in Wigan, where a female was subjected to racial abuse whilst attending her vehicle on the away supporters' car-park."

Mr Davison will appear at Wigan Magistrates' Court on 2 February 2010.