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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.

Find out more about private prosecutions

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

Woman sentenced for making false health claims to receive benefits


A 49-year-old Croydon woman who cruelly subjected her two children to unnecessary and invasive medical treatment by making false claims about their health so she could claim benefits, has been sentenced to seven and a half years imprisonment today (August 15th) at Croydon Crown Court.

Malcolm McHaffie, Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor for CPS London, said: "The prosecution's case was that the defendant's actions in exposing and subjecting her children to unnecessary and invasive operations and excessive medication were motivated by dishonesty and greed. As a result of her extraordinary cruelty, this individual is now going to spend a significant amount of time in prison.

"In total over a period of at least 10 years she successfully claimed £375,198.02 in Disability Living Allowance and Income Support benefit. That a mother should go to such lengths of child cruelty, spanning at least 10 years, to support the false and exaggerated benefits claims that she made is beyond comprehension.

"The thorough three-year police investigation by the MPS laid the strong foundations for this successful prosecution, which demonstrates our commitment to work together to tackle instances of child cruelty and benefit fraud in London."

Convicted of:

  • Four counts of cruelty to a person under 16
  • Two counts of obtaining money transfer by deception
  • Seven counts of making a false representation
  • Two counts of fraud by false representation


Notes to Editors

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  2. For media enquiries call the CPS Press Office on 020 3357 0906; Out of Hours Pager 07699 781 926