Criminal Procedure and Investigations Act (CPIA)
One of the most common reasons for a criminal case to be lost is a failure of the process relating to disclosure of unused material. If this happens the guilty go free and there can often be considerable reputational damage to the organisation who brought the prosecution. The prosecution team’s duties under the Criminal Procedure and Investigations Act (CPIA) 1996 are not simply about compiling schedules of unused material as part of preparation for court. At the heart of every investigation is the obligation, in the CPIA 1996 and Code of Practice, to pursue all reasonable lines of enquiry whether these point towards or away from the suspect.
In the early stages of the investigation it may not be clear whether an offence has been committed, whether a prosecution is likely to follow and whether material obtained may be used in evidence or will be unused. Following reasonable lines of enquiry and recording and retaining of relevant material requires considerable professional expertise.
The CPIA 1996 and Code of Practice determine the extent of the enquiries that should be made. The distinction between evidential and unused material often only becomes apparent as the investigation progresses. The prosecution team should take the opportunity to confirm or rebut potential and proffered defences, and should be aware of the extent to which any disclosable material might weaken the case. A safe and successful prosecution requires a dedicated and professional approach.
In House CPIA Training
CPIA training can be delivered for your organisation, at a venue of your choice and for up to 12 delegates.
Because of the specialist nature of this training it is beneficial for us to discuss your exact needs and requirements. Please contact us and our senior course trainer will be pleased to arrange a consultation.
Application of the CPIA 1996 and Code of Practice to Non-Police Investigators
Any person other than a police officer who is charged with the duty of conducting a criminal investigation as defined in the CPIA 1996 shall have regard to the relevant provisions of the Code of Practice and should take these into account in applying their own operating procedures.
- Local Authorities
- Central Government
- Private Organisations
- Social Services
- National Crime Agency / CEOP
Sancus offer two courses; “CPIA” and “Advanced CPIA” Training both deliverable ‘In House’.