CPS WEST MIDLANDS AND YOU DOMESTIC VIOLENCE RACIST AND RELIGIOUS CRIME HOMOPHOBIC CRIME A R E A OV E R V I E W CPS WEST MIDLANDS AND YOU Our commitment Domestic Prosecuting hate Helping you Area The Crown to you safety for you crime for you to feel safe information Prosecution Service in the West Midlands and We regard a racist or religiously-motivated 1in 4 YOU The CPS is working in women will incident as: partnership with other experience domestic CPS West Midlands is the second largest Area in criminal justice system Any incident which is perceived to be We regard a homophobic incident as: England and Wales, responsible to a population of violence at some time in their lives. agencies to make the West racist or religiously motivated by some 2.6 million people. The Area currently Any incident which is perceived Midlands a safer place to live, the victim or any other person. employs 550 members of staff, with 168 of those work and play. The chance of being a victim in this area is 2 women are killed every week by a current or former partner. An offence is racially or religiously aggravated if: to be homophobic or transphobic by the victim or by any other person [including the perpetrator]. lawyers. In 2005/06 we prosecuted over 120,000 cases in the Crown Courts and Magistrates’ Courts. …working with now at its lowest level for 20 years. Violence against women and children is a G at the time of committing the offence, or We regard homophobic crimes as particularly West Midlands is one of the most diverse, multi- cultural parts of the country. This is reflected in our our community crime immediately before or after doing so, the serious because they undermine people’s right to staff profile and the nature of community engage- We have now established 10 Victim and Witness offender demonstrates towards the victim of the ments currently being undertaken by CPS. feel safe about, and be safe in, their sexual Teams across the Area. Staffed by the CPS and Domestic violence offence hostility based on the victim’s police, they provide timely information to victims orientation. The Area divides naturally in to three – The Black Rape and sexual assaults membership (or presumed membership) of a Country (Western Sector), Birmingham (Central and witnesses about the progress of their case. We “Future” by Robert Bowers, Brindley Place, Forced marriage racial or religious group; or Such crimes are based on prejudice, Sector) and Coventry (Eastern Sector). aim to provide information to all victims and Honour crimes discrimination and hate, and they have no place in witnesses within 24 hours of key decisions being There are co-located Units with the police at: Child abuse G the offence is motivated (wholly or partly) by reached. We will support victims and witnesses in an open and democratic society. G Birmingham G Warley order to minimise the concerns often felt at the Elder abuse hostility towards members of a racial or G Solihull G Wolverhampton prospect of giving evidence before a court. Human trafficking religious group based on their membership of We regard the homophobic element of any crime G Bournville G Sutton Coldfield Prostitution that group. as a serious aggravating feature. We are G Brierley Hill G Walsall I hope that you will find the time to read this Female genital mutilation determined to play our part in reducing crime by G Coventry G West Bromwich report and, if you wish to raise any issues of Certain offences, including assault, harassment, bringing offenders to justice. G Halesowen Birmingham. concern with us, our contact details are below. Freephone 24-hour National Domestic criminal damage and public order offences, can be Violence Helpline: 0808 2000 247 prosecuted specifically as racially or religiously- The Area continues to train its prosecutors to equip David Blundell Perpetrators’ phoneline RESPECT: aggravated offences. them with up to date skills and knowledge required Chief Crown Prosecutor, 0845 122 8609 to prosecute homophobic crime cases. In February CPS West Midlands With any other offence where there is evidence of 2006 we launched our Homophobic Action Plan racial or religious aggravation, the defendant faces a Area HQ, Colmore Gate, 2 Colmore Row, and hosted a seminar to provide guidance and Birmingham B3 2QA; harsher sentence than if he or she were found guilty advice to prosecutors on handling cases of this tel: 0121 262 1300 (Switchboard); e-mail: of a non-racial or religious crime. nature. WMAHQ.WESTMIDLANDS@CPS.GSI.GOV.UK SUPPORTING THE C P S W E S T M I D L A N D S : W H AT W E D O CODE FOR CROWN PROSECUTORS VICTIMS OF CRIME LOCAL COMMUNITY CPS WEST MIDLANDS AND YOU CPS WEST MIDLANDS AND YOU What the CPS Justice for you Keeping you Supporting Working for Working you together for you does for you The Code for Crown Prosecutors is a public informed you document, issued by the The Crown Prosecution Service was set up in 1986 Director of Public The Code No Witness No Justice One of the continued main priorities for the Area in 2005-2006 was to increase the public’s We are committed in ensuring all of our staff In 2003 a new Local Criminal Justice Board was to prosecute criminal cases investigated by the Prosecutions that sets out confidence in the CPS. Through the successful posses the right skills to perform their duties and to created to transform the way the criminal justice police in England and Wales. In undertaking this the general principles At the heart of No Witness No Justice are the community engagement programme, which we provide a world class prosecution service to the system works. The overall aim of the new Board is role, the CPS: Crown Prosecutors should The Code for Crown Prosecutors Witness Care Units, which now provide an have been running over the last three years, the community that we serve. to catch, convict and rehabilitate more criminals in follow when they make enhanced level of service to all victims and Area is proud to say that we continued to achieve the West Midlands. G advises the police on cases for possible decisions on cases. witnesses in England and Wales in cases where a Since its launch in 2004, we have sponsored 46 this priority and in May 2005 at the prestigious prosecution charge has been brought. This includes completing inaugural Law Society and the Commission for members of staff to progress through the CPS Law Crown Prosecution The Board was established after national research G reviews cases submitted by the police for needs assessments, to identify childcare or Service Racial Equality Solicitors’ Race Equality Awards Scholarship Scheme, which offers all grades of staff showed that in 2000/2001, over five million prosecution accessibility issues for example, and organising 2005, CPS West Midlands were awarded the opportunities to higher education. crimes were recorded but only a fifth of them (1.2 G where the decision is to prosecute, determines pre-court familiarisation visits. winners award in the category ‘Best Service million) resulted in offenders being brought to jus- the charge in all but minor cases Is there enough evidence Provider In-House Legal Department and Public In 2003, we became the first CPS Area to sign up tice. This is known as the ‘justice gap’. The Board G prepares cases for court; and against the defendant? Victims’ Code Sector’. to the Public Sector Compact, which has been is made up of representatives from the Police, CPS, G presents those cases at court created to bring together public sector Magistrates’ Court, Crown Court, Probation In making this award, the judges were impressed organisations, raise the profile of public services, Service, Prison Service and Youth Offending Teams. When deciding whether there is enough evidence The Code of Practice for Victims of Crime came by the range of actives, such as mentoring schemes staff development and to make the public sector an Each year we handle around 51,714 magistrates’ to prosecute, Crown Prosecutors must consider into full effect on 3 April 2006. with local universities, the use of ethnic media to employer of choice. court cases and over 5,450 Crown Court cases. In The Board is particularly concerned at tackling the whether evidence can be used in court and is explain and provide information about the work of 2005-06, the Area finalised 111,694 cases in the following four main areas: reliable. Crown Prosecutors must be satisfied there is The Code of Practice will give victims rights to the CPS and training staff to work with local Under this joint working and in conjunction with magistrates’ court of which 43,855 were referred to enough evidence to provide a “realistic prospect of minimum standards of service from the criminal communities were all undertaken to try to improve the Charted Management Institute, the Diploma in G persistent offenders for the Pre Charge Decision and 8,409 finalised conviction” against each defendant. justice system for the first time. This includes confidence, especially that of BME communities. Public Service Leadership was created to equip G specific types of priority crime - street crime, cases in the notifying vulnerable or intimidated victims within today’s public service leaders with the skills to house burglary, usage of knives and hate Crown Is it in the public interest for one working day if there is insufficient evidence to become public service leaders of tomorrow. In crimes including domestic violence cases Court. charge a defendant, and within five working days 2005, all five CPS managers passed this course. G weaknesses in the criminal justice process the CPS to bring the case to for all other victims, as well as identifying any Pictured from left: G providing support for victims and witnesses. CRE Chair Trevor Pictured left: Assistant Chief court? special measures that may be appropriate. Philips, Law Constable David Society Chief Shaw from West A prosecution will usually take place unless the The CPS is committed to its obligations under the Executive Janet Pictured: The Midlands Police code, which formalises many of the good things it Paraskeva, Vinny Chief Crown and Director of public interest factors against prosecution clearly is already doing. Bolina, CPS, Lord Prosecutor and Public Prosecutions outweigh those in favour of prosecution. Falconer, Lord Area Business Ken Macdonald open the Chancellor, David Manager (centre) Birmingham Blundell, CPS, at the passing out Prosecution Team Nicky Campbell, ceremony for the Unit. BBC. Diploma in Public Service Leadership.
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