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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

Two convicted of ill-treatment of patients at Solar Centre


Martin Goldman, Chief Crown Prosecutor, CPS Yorkshire and Humberside said: "Susan Murphy and James Hinds have today been found guilty of the ill-treatment of patients at the Solar Centre in Doncaster.

"People attended the Solar Centre for respite, care and understanding. Instead they were subjected to humiliation, abuse and ill-treatment due to their vulnerability. This is an appalling abuse of trust and a violation of what society should be able to expect from people in the care profession.

"We acknowledge that this conviction has taken some time to secure and I pay tribute to the fortitude of the victims and their families.

"In October 2011, we appointed a specialist lawyer from the Complex Casework Unit to work closely with South Yorkshire Police to ensure all available evidence was gathered and put before the court. We kept the families involved throughout our considerations and the lawyer met with many of them to inform them of his decisions and explain the next steps.

"I hope those involved can now find some comfort in the knowledge they achieved justice and their accounts of what happened led to Hinds and Murphy being held to account."


Susan Murphy was found guilty of 15 out of 20 charges relating to the ill-treatment of patients, and James Hinds was found guilty of 10 out of 19 charges. Julie Burge and Michael Barnard were acquitted of all charges.


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.