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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

Support for Victims and Witnesses

Being a victim or a witness to a crime is not easy, but, with your help, we work hard to bring offenders to justice. Throughout the justice process we will support you and treat you with dignity.

The aim of witness care units is to provide a single point of contact for Victims and Witnesses, minimising the stress of attending court and keeping  victims and witnesses up to date with any news in a way that is convenient to them.

Witnesses are essential to successful prosecutions and we are committed to making the process as straightforward as we can.

Read the fact sheet about witness care units

Find out more about being a witness

Man imprisoned for Bernie Ecclestone blackmail plot


Martin Peckham was today sentenced at Southwark Crown Court to five years' imprisonment for a blackmail plot involving the family of Bernie Ecclestone.

CPS London Crown Advocate Peter Zinner said: "Peckham purported to be a mercenary that was aware of a kidnap plot involving a gang of criminals from the Middle East. He contacted the family and told them for £200,000 he would deploy a team of men to effectively take out the kidnap gang.

"Whatever his motivation, this dreamed-up plot was simple but menacing enough to rack up the fear in the Ecclestone household. It elicited an immediate and devastating effect upon the family.

"Although this plot was fairly amateurish and committed, it seems, by a fantasist, it was executed with persistence and determination and is aggravated by the period of time that family was kept in fear."


Note: The charge was 'Blackmail between 20th June and 4th July 2012'.