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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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CPS authorises charges in relation to death of Becky Watts

04/03/2015

The Crown Prosecution Service has today authorised Avon and Somerset Police to charge a 28-year-old man with the murder of 16 year old Becky Watts.

Rachael Scott, head of the CPS South West Complex Casework Unit said: "The CPS has been in close contact with Avon and Somerset police as their extensive investigation into Becky's disappearance developed. In particular I have been offering advice and guidance to the police since two people were arrested on Saturday.

"My role is to examine the evidence that is currently available and advise the police in respect of charges.

"Having carried out a detailed review of the evidence gathered by Avon and Somerset Police, my conclusion is that there is sufficient evidence to charge Nathan Matthews with the murder of Becky Watts.

"I have also concluded that there is sufficient evidence to charge Shauna Hoare with attempting to pervert the course of justice.

"I have therefore today authorised Avon and Somerset police to charge them with these offences and they will appear before Bristol Magistrates' Court tomorrow morning.

"Proceedings are now ongoing and the defendants have the right to a fair trial. It is very important that there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings."

The four men and one woman who were arrested on Monday on suspicion of assisting an offender remain in police custody at this time.

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 CPS consists of 13 Areas in total, each headed by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP). In addition, there are three national casework divisions: Specialist Fraud (formerly Central Fraud and Welfare, Rural & Health Divisions), Special Crime & Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime. CPS Direct is a 'virtual' 14th Area which provides charging decisions to all police forces and other investigators across England and Wales - it operates twenty-four hours, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
  3. At 31 March 2014 we employed a workforce of approximately 6237 staff (full time equivalent), including around 2226 prosecutors and 3629 caseworkers and administrators. Further information can be found on our website:  www.cps.gov.uk.
  4. 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.