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Advice on charging Joe

You’ll have seen that one of the roles of the CPS is to provide advice on charging decisions. What might this mean for Joe?

The CPS are guided in this context by Charging Standards. Charging Standards set out basic legal principles which prosecutors use to help them to decide which, if any, offence to charge. So, for example, in cases where some kind of assault is alleged, a range of possible offences might be relevant. The relevant guidance relating to offences against the person sets out some general principles relating to charging, including the suggestion that the level of harm which appears to have been caused to the victim is a key determinant of which offence should be charged.

The guidance also sets out the specific legal differences between different offences, which can be used to inform charging decisions.

Have a look at the guidance in relation to charging and prosecuting an offence under section 18 of the Offences against the Person Act of causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

The CPS think that this is the offence with which Joe should be charged, and they advise the police accordingly. What aspects of the guidance do you think have helped them to reach that decision?

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This article is from the free online course:

From Crime to Punishment: an Introduction to Criminal Justice

University of York