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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 statement on discontinuance of charges against 11 G20 protesters

29/01/2010

Alison Saunders, CPS London Chief Crown Prosecutor, said:

"I have advised all concerned parties that the CPS is discontinuing the prosecution of 11 individuals who had been charged with impersonating a police officer at the G20 protests in April 2009 as there is no longer sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction.

"In November 2009 CPS London received information from the defence team acting for these individuals and as a result we asked the police to gather further evidence which we received this month. That evidence, and further evidence provided by the defence team this month, included the fact that the individuals were part of a theatre group and that members of the public had thought it was a stunt.

"In order to prosecute an individual with impersonating a police officer the CPS must prove that that an individual did so with intent to deceive. Although we had evidence from a police officer that within the context of the G20 protest some members of the public did believe these individuals to be police officers, this further evidence indicates that others did not and that there was no intent to do so.

"The CPS keeps all ongoing prosecutions under continuous review and will discontinue any case if we believe there is no longer a realistic prospect of conviction."

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