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DPP announces new 'all-time high' for conviction rate in rape and domestic violence cases


The Crown Prosecution Service has today published new figures that show the conviction rate for rape and domestic violence prosecutions increased once again last year.

The statistics show that the conviction rate for rape prosecutions has continued to rise to the highest on record, from 58% in 2007/08 to 63% in 2012/13. CPS recorded data on rape prosecutions includes all cases initially charged and flagged as rape, including those cases where a conviction was obtained for alternative sexual offences or serious offences of homicide or offences against the person.

The conviction rate for domestic violence has also increased by 1% this year and now stands at 74%, compared to 60% in 2005/06.

Keir Starmer QC, Director of Public Prosecutions, said: "We have put a lot of work into improving our approach to cases of rape and domestic violence. Five years ago, the CPS was the first Government department to develop an integrated strategy for tackling violence against women and girls (VAWG) and these figures are evidence that the strategy is paying off.

"Conviction rates for rape and domestic violence are at an all-time high. For victims of these appalling crimes, the message is clear: you can have confidence that the criminal justice system is getting better and better at prosecuting these offences and if your case is charged there is now a very strong chance that your attacker will be convicted. Offenders too should be warned.

"As I announced last month, there will now be a dedicated rape and serious sexual offence (RASSO) unit established in every CPS Area and I hope this will help to sustain and improve our performance in these types of cases. In addition, in November last year we also produced, in partnership with the Association of Chief Police Officers, a new domestic violence checklist for police officers and prosecutors to help build the best possible prosecution case and ensure victims get the service they deserve.

"Recent developments in the VAWG strategy include the implementation of a CPS action plan to improve prosecution of cases involving female genital mutilation and I am currently holding a series of roundtable events to inform new guidance for prosecutors on the issue of child sexual abuse.

"However there is clearly more work to do. Violence against women and girls is a key priority for the CPS, and we continue to monitor our progress on these types of cases very closely to ensure we continue to improve our performance."



Notes to Editors

  1. Latest prosecution figures for cases of rape and domestic violence:
  2. Rape Prosecutions

    Descriptionconviction - numberconviction - %unsuccessful - numberunsuccessful - %Total

    Domestic violence prosecutions

    Descriptionconviction - numberconviction - %unsuccessful - numberunsuccessful - %Total
  3. The CPS started flagging and recording cases of domestic violence for 2005/06 and for rape cases in 2007/08.
  4. These are ‘headline figures’ and more detailed analysis of CPS performance in cases involving VAWG in 2012/13 will be published later this year in the next CPS Annual VAWG crime report. The Annual VAWG crime report for 2011/12 is available on the website.
  5. From January 2011, a VAWG assurance system was set up for CPS Areas to provide detailed assessments of their overall VAWG performance on a six monthly basis to the Director of Public Prosecutions. Once Areas submit their assessments through the VAWG assurance system the DPP, with support from the VAWG team, will provide detailed feedback to them and they are then required to draw up three action points following each bi-annual assessment.
  6. Helpline numbers:
    • National domestic violence helpline: 0808 2000 247
    • Mens advice line: 0808 801 0327
    • Broken rainbow: 0300 999 5428
    • National stalking helpline: 0808 802 0300
    • Childline: 0800 1111
    • England 24-hour helpline 0808 200 0247
    • Wales 24-hour helpline 08457 023 468
    • Scotland 24-hour helpline 0800 027 1234
    • Northern Ireland 24-hour free-phone helpline 0800 917 1414
    • Republic of Ireland helpline 1800 341900