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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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Operation Elveden: Two Sun journalists and former Broadmoor healthcare assistant to be charged

21/06/2013

Gregor McGill, a senior lawyer with the Crown Prosecution Service, whose team handles CPS decision making and potential prosecutions in relation to the ongoing phone hacking investigations and other related matters, said: "This statement is made in the interests of transparency and accountability to explain the decisions reached in respect of cases arising from Operation Elveden, which is the Metropolitan Police's investigation into allegations involving the unlawful provision of information by public officials to journalists.

"This announcement relates to two files of evidence from the Metropolitan Police Service received by the CPS on 5 April and 24 May 2013.

"Following a careful review of the evidence, we have concluded that Jamie Pyatt, a journalist at The Sun newspaper, John Edwards, Pictures Editor at The Sun newspaper, and Robert Neave, a former healthcare assistant at Broadmoor Hospital, should each be charged with one count of conspiring together, and with persons unknown, to commit misconduct in a public office.

"In relation to the specific allegations in this case, it is alleged that over a period of almost nine years The Sun newspaper made payments totalling more than £30,000 to public officials including police officers, army personnel and Broadmoor officials, including Robert Neave, in exchange for information.

"It is alleged that the information for which The Sun made payments included that relating to the health and activities of Broadmoor patients, details about the work of a member of the Royal family and details of ongoing police investigations.

"All of these matters were considered carefully in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors and the DPP's guidelines on the public interest in cases affecting the media. These guidelines asks prosecutors to consider whether the public interest served by the conduct in question outweighs the overall criminality before bringing criminal proceedings.

"Accordingly, we have authorised the institution of proceedings against Jamie Pyatt, John Edwards and Robert Neave and all three individuals will appear before Westminster Magistrates' Court on 18 July 2013.

"May I remind all concerned that proceedings for criminal offences involving these three individuals will now be commenced and that each has a right to a fair trial. It is very important that nothing is said, or reported, which could prejudice that trial. For these reasons it would be inappropriate for me to comment further."

The full charge is as follows:

Between 22 March 2002 and 12 January 2011, JAMIE PYATT, JOHN EDWARDS and ROBERT NEAVE conspired together and with public officials unknown, namely public officials employed at Broadmoor secure hospital, employees of the Thames Valley and Surrey Police forces, and officials in the British Army, to commit misconduct in a public office.

Contrary to section 1(1) Criminal Law Act 1977.

Ends

Notes to Editors

  1. For media enquiries call the CPS Press Office on 020 3357 0906; Out of Hours Pager 07699 781 926
  2. The DPP has set out what the public can expect from the CPS in the Core Quality Standards document published in March 2010.
  3. The CPS consists of 13 Areas in total, each headed by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP). In addition, there are three specialised national divisions: Central Fraud Division, Special Crime and Counter Terrorism, and Organised Crime. In 2011-2012, The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Department of Health (DoH) prosecution functions were transferred to the CPS. A telephone service, CPS Direct, provides out-of-hours advice and decisions to police officers across England and Wales.
  4. In 2010-2011 the CPS employed around 7,745 people and prosecuted 957,881 cases with 116,898 of these in the Crown Court, and the remaining 840,983 in the magistrates' courts. Of those we prosecuted, 93,106 defendants were convicted in the Crown Court and 727,491 in the magistrates' courts. In total 86% of cases prosecuted resulted in a conviction. Further information can be found on the CPS website.
  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. Read the Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media.