Crown Prosecution Service: Effective Use of Magistrates' Courts Hearings; Sixty-first Report of Session 2005-06; Report, Together with Formal Minutes, Oral and Written Evidence

Following on from a NAO report (HCP 798, session 2005-06, ISBN 0102936978) published in February 2006, the Committee's report concludes that the handling of cases in magistrates' courts has in recent years become complex and protracted to the extent that it no longer amounts to summary justice. 55 per cent of the £173 million cost of delay in the magistrates' courts is attributable to the defence, but the police and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) account for another 14 per cent (£24 million) each. The CPS needs to review its organisational structure, revise its system for preparing for magistrates' court cases by adopting current best practice, and address the cultural resistance within the organisation to more modern working practices.

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