Frequently asked questions
Not necessarily. If you qualify as an intimidated or vulnerable witness, you may be eligible for "special measures". This allows, for example, the court to erect a screen between you and the defendant or for you to give evidence by a video link. Detailed guidance on the many special measures available to protect witnesses is provided on the Crown Prosecution Service website
The police investigation into the crime should begin immediately after you report it. By law, the police must regular updates (at least monthly) about your case. They must also tell you if someone is arrested and charged for the crime, and provide clear information about whether you qualify for aid from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority .
No, you do not have to provide a statement if you do not want to. But if you fail to provide one the police may not be able to investigate the crime. If you feel uneasy about making a statement, you should know that you do not have to give it immediately. Another thing to note is that after you have made and signed your statement, it may become part of the prosecution case and all parties involved in the case, including the accused, will be able to read it.
Yes. Every citizen has the right to bring a private prosecution to enforce criminal laws. If you suffered an injury, property damage, or theft as a result of a crime, you may also be able to sue the perpetrator for compensation -- even if he or she is acquitted of all criminal charges.
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Criminal: Armed Selfridges robbers are sentenced to 58 years in prison
Thugs who stole millions of pounds worth of jewellery during an armed raid on Selfridges are sentenced to prison, reports the Daily Mail. During daylight hours on 6th June 2013, five armed robbers entered London's Selfridges store and terrified staff...
Contract law: Government hit with £224m bill for unlawful abolishment of e-Border scheme
Arbitration tribunal rules that government's termination of its contract with e-Borders firm, Raytheon, was unlawful, reports the BBC. Having signed a nine-year contract with US e-Borders firm, Raytheon, in 2007, the government later deemed the programme a failure and believed...
Copyright law: Lawyers from Premier League clubs not suing video-makers
Legal teams representing Premier League football clubs will not be pursing legal action against fans who had shared unofficial match footage via the video distribution site Vine, reports the Lawyer. On Friday 15 August, Premier League officials told fans any...
Human Rights: EU 'Right to be Forgotten' law causes controversy
Numerous requests made to Google to have links to articles removed quoting the European right to be forgotten have sparked a heated debate, reports The Telegraph. Following the removal of countless links to articles regarding criminal activity, the EU's right...
Extradition law: Assange finally ready to leave Ecuadorian embassy in London following changes to UK law
After two years inside the safety of the building in Knightsbridge, Julian Assange has announced his plan to leave the embassy as a result of the changes made to UK extradition law, reports the Telegraph. Having claimed political asylum in...
Public services companies may be forced to publish details of their business activities under new Freedom of Information laws
Due to a potential overhaul of the current Freedom of Information laws, any company providing public services such as energy companies could be compelled to reveal details of their business, reports the Telegraph. The Liberal Democrats are attempting to put...
Immigration law: 35 suspected illegal immigrants found in a shipping container in the port of Tilbury
35 people, believed to be illegal immigrants, were discovering in a shipping container this Saturday after "screaming and banging" was heard by Tilbury port workers, reports the Guardian. On Saturday 16 August, port workers discovered 35 people, including 10 children,...
Criminal: Police accuse BBC of breaking its own rules
In a controversial act, the BBC broadcast live coverage of the police raid on Sir Cliff Richard's home last week. The broadcaster has now been greatly criticised and is accused of 'breaking its own guidelines' by putting police under pressure...
Criminal: UKIP MEP calls for reintroduction of capital punishment
On the anniversary of the final death by capital punishment, UKIP MEP, Louise Bours, calls for the reinstatement of the death penalty, reports the Daily Mail. Despite many celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the last case of capital punishment in...
Criminal: One found guilty while another walks free for attempting to fund terrorism
A woman who was arrested for attempting to smuggle money into Turkey to fund terrorism was found not guilty, though her old friend and organiser of the entire operation was, reports the BBC. Londoner, Nawal Msaad, was stopped by police...
Norman Baker, drugs minister, has called for cannabis to be legalised for medicinal use
Liberal Democrat drugs minister, Norman Baker, will be sending a letter to Jeremy Hunt, the Conservative health secretary, calling for cannabis to be legalised to relieve symptoms of particular medical conditions, the Guardian reports. Baker will be informing Hunt that...
Sentencing: Report into prisoner suicide calls for greater protection for young inmates
A recent report has expressed concern for the number of young prisoners taking their own lives, reports the BBC. Following a report into 80 suicides by young prisoners that have taken place in the last seven years, Prisons and Probation...
Fraud: Benefits cheat with private income sentenced to jail
Benefits cheat, Seema Bassi of Illford, Essex, has been jailed for twelve months following her court hearing, reports the Daily Mail. Despite boasting a sizeable portfolio of 26 properties which she leased to both private and council tenants, Ms Bassi...
Criminal Law: Thousands of domestic abusers avoid criminal records by apologising
It has been found that a large number of domestic abusers are not being given criminal records even after they have carried out acts of domestic violence because they have been allowed to apologise. These apologies are known as "community...
Green energy: Influential business leaders claim the EU's green policies will cost the UK over a million jobs
It has been claimed by Business for Britain, a group of well-regarded business leaders, the EU's green energy laws will but 1.5m manufacturing jobs at risk in the UK reports the Telegraph. Business for Britain (BfB) has published a report...