Criminology students learn about the work of the Crown Prosecution Service


Two Kent based prosecutors have been talking to sixth form criminology students about their work in the CPS and the career paths they took to become prosecutors in the organisation.

Rachael Laughland and Will Bodiam are both Senior Crown Prosecutors in the Kent Crown Court team, dealing with a range of cases including attempted murders, assaults, and drugs supply. However, each took a different career route, with Will qualifying as a solicitor and working in the defence community before joining the CPS, while Rachael qualified as a barrister.

They both spoke to students at the Howard School in Rainham about how they had first joined the CPS as members of the administration team, before progressing to their current positions.

Rachael Laughland speaking to students at the Howard School

As well as explaining their background, the pair took the class through how prosecutors make decisions in cases using the Code for Crown Prosecutors and the different types of offences that can be heard in either the magistrates’ or Crown Court or both.

They finished with a practical exercise, asking the class to decide in an assault case about whether they would have charged anyone and, if so, which type of assault they would have charged. 

Will said: "We had some really animated discussions over a range of issues, including things we hadn't even brought into the presentation, which was really good to see. The students were really engaged and clearly interested to learn more about the work of the CPS."

Rachael said: "We both wanted to do this presentation, as we felt that, between us, we had a wealth of experience within the CPS. We’ve worked in a whole range of jobs, both on the magistrates’ and Crown Court side of the businesses and with the different qualification routes we took, we were able to talk to the students about all the options for a career in law."

Charlie Webb from the Howard School said: "Rachael and Will created a fantastic learning opportunity for our students to understand the role of the CPS within the judiciary system, allowing them to apply their knowledge to real life situations. The students engaged well and the session has embedded knowledge needed to help them become successful in their Criminology studies."