The Work of the CCU

The unit is equipped to deal with the most serious and complex cases including:

  • cross border and international organised crime
  • cases involving major targeted criminals and/or organised crime
  • large-scale and sophisticated fraud and money laundering
  • large-scale drug and human trafficking
  • complex or sensitive murders
  • serious sexual abuse
  • major public disorder offences
  • serious or complex misconduct by police officers
  • sudden infant death
  • major child abuse
  • anything that is likely to attract a high degree of media interest. 

Handling Complex Crime

Chris Derrick, Head of the CCUIn 2008, the CPS Thames and Chiltern Complex Casework Unit (CCU) was set up at our Oxford office. Following the closure of the Oxford office in October 2016, the unit relocated to our Reading office. The CCU is a team of experienced specialist lawyers, paralegal officers and administrators who work in collaboration with our three police forces to tackle serious, organised, and cross border crime across Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, and Oxfordshire. The Unit advises and guides the police during these complex and major investigations.

Increasingly, we use our own highly skilled Crown Advocates to present these very serious cases in the Crown Court. This ensures that the CPS has conduct of the cases from start to finish, providing a quality and consistent service.

The CCU also has the important responsibility for enforcing court orders to recover the assets of criminals.

Head of the CCU, Chris Derrick (pictured), said: "It is vital that the public knows that we have the skills, expertise and the motivation to handle the most serious of cases in this Area. Whilst the most serious crimes are relatively rare, we work together with the police major crime units across the Thames and Chiltern Area to ensure that those who commit these terrible acts are brought to justice."

Recent Casework

September 2013: Operation Natagora - The conviction of a man for the murder of Rachel Manning, who went missing after a night out in Milton Keynes on 10 December 2010.  Her body was discovered two days later at Woburn Golf Club.  The man was tried at Luton Crown Court 12 August-04 September 2013.  He was sentenced 04 September 2013, to life imprisonment and to serve a minimum of 17 years.

May 2013: Operation Bullfinch - The conviction of seven men for 59 counts of child sexual abuse offences (including rape, facilitating child prostitution, and trafficking), which occurred in Cowley, Oxfordshire. Nine men were tried at the Old Bailey 14 January - 14 May 2013.  The seven men who were found guilty were sentenced 27 June 2013, to a combined total of a minimum of 95 years imprisonment.

May 2013: Operation Netwing - The conviction of three men and a woman, from the same family, for offences relating to servitude, compulsory labour, and assault, which occurred at the Greenacres travellers' site, Little Billington, Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire.  Five men and a woman were tried at Luton Crown Court 16 April - 11 July 2012.  Of the four found guilty, one of the men and the woman were sentenced 12 July 2012, to 11 years and 4 years imprisonment respectively.  The other two men were sentenced 07 May 2013, to eight years and five years imprisonment, giving a combined total of 28 years imprisonment.

January 2013: Operation Tandem - The conviction of five men for their involvement in a fatal road traffic collision, which occurred in Denham, Buckinghamshire.  This landmark case was the first of its kind in the country as the deliberately-caused accident, arranged as part of a plan to commit insurance fraud (crash for cash), led to a second collision, which caused the death of an innocent member of the public.  The five men were tried at Reading Crown Court 13 November 2012 - 10 January 2013.  The five men were sentenced 15 February 2013, to a combined total of 32 years and six months imprisonment.

November 2012: Operation Sacristy - The conviction of a man for the murder of Colonel Robert 'Riley' Workman, who was shot dead on his doorstep in Furneux Pelham, Hertfordshire in 2004.  The man was tried at St Albans Crown Court 02 October-05 November 2012.  He was sentenced 05 November 2012, to life imprisonment and to serve a minimum of 32 years.

July 2012: The conviction of a 64-year-old man for the murder of Yolande Waddington, who was stabbed and strangled and dumped in a ditch in Beenham, Berkshire in 1966.  The man was tried at Reading Crown Court 13 June - 20 July 2012.  He was sentenced 23 July 2012, to life imprisonment and to serve a minimum of 27 years.

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