Attorney General

The Attorney General’s Office (AGO) provides legal advice and support to the Attorney General and the Solicitor General (the Law Officers) who give legal advice to government. The AGO helps the Law Officers perform other duties in the public interest, such as looking at sentences which may be too low.



Secretary of State

 Portrait

Suella Braverman
Attorney General

 Portrait

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)

Shadow Ministers / Spokeperson
Labour
Emily Thornberry (LAB - Islington South and Finsbury)
Shadow Attorney General

Liberal Democrat
Lord Thomas of Gresford (LDEM - Life peer)
Liberal Democrat Shadow Attorney General

Plaid Cymru
Liz Saville Roberts (PC - Dwyfor Meirionnydd)
Shadow PC Spokesperson (Attorney General)

Scottish National Party
Angela Crawley (SNP - Lanark and Hamilton East)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Attorney General)
Scheduled Event
Thursday 7th July 2022
10:10
Attorney General
Oral questions - Main Chamber
7 Jul 2022, 10:10 a.m.
Attorney General
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Scheduled Event
Thursday 22nd September 2022
10:10
Attorney General
Oral questions - Main Chamber
22 Sep 2022, 10:10 a.m.
Attorney General
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Debates
Thursday 26th May 2022
Select Committee Docs
None available
Select Committee Inquiry
None available
Written Answers
Thursday 30th June 2022
Road Traffic Offences: Prosecutions
To ask the Attorney General, what steps the Crown Prosecution Service takes when deciding to prosecute defendants of road death …
Secondary Legislation
Wednesday 15th June 2022
Bolton (Electoral Changes) Order 2022
This Order makes changes to electoral arrangements for the borough of Bolton following recommendations made by the Local Government Boundary …
Bills
None available
Dept. Publications
Thursday 30th June 2022
17:39
Treaty
None available

Attorney General Commons Appearances

Oral Answers to Questions is a regularly scheduled appearance where the Secretary of State and junior minister will answer at the Dispatch Box questions from backbench MPs

Other Commons Chamber appearances can be:
  • Urgent Questions where the Speaker has selected a question to which a Minister must reply that day
  • Adjornment Debates a 30 minute debate attended by a Minister that concludes the day in Parliament.
  • Oral Statements informing the Commons of a significant development, where backbench MP's can then question the Minister making the statement.

Westminster Hall debates are performed in response to backbench MPs or e-petitions asking for a Minister to address a detailed issue

Written Statements are made when a current event is not sufficiently significant to require an Oral Statement, but the House is required to be informed.

Most Recent Commons Appearances by Category
Apr. 28
Oral Questions
Sep. 25
Urgent Questions
May. 26
Written Statements
Oct. 07
Westminster Hall
Oct. 05
Adjournment Debate
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Bills currently before Parliament

Attorney General does not have Bills currently before Parliament


Acts of Parliament created in the 2019 Parliament

Attorney General has not passed any Acts during the 2019 Parliament

Attorney General - Secondary Legislation

This Order makes changes to electoral arrangements for the borough of Stockton-on-Tees following recommendations made by the Local Government Boundary Commission for England. The area of the borough remains unchanged.
This Order makes changes to electoral arrangements for Wolverhampton following recommendations made by the Local Government Boundary Commission for England. The area of Wolverhampton remains unchanged.
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Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Trending Petitions
Petition Open
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Petitions with most signatures
Petition Open
53 Signatures
(2 in the last 7 days)
Attorney General has not participated in any petition debates
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50 most recent Written Questions

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department

22nd Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what steps the Crown Prosecution Service takes when deciding to prosecute defendants of road death offences.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), in making its decision on whether or not a case should be prosecuted, will always apply the two-stage test set out in the Code for Crown Prosecutors (the Code).

The Code is issued by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) under section 10 of the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985. The Code gives guidance to prosecutors on the general principles to be applied when making decisions about prosecutions.

The first stage (the evidential stage) requires the prosecutor to be satisfied that there is a realistic prospect of conviction on the evidence. The second stage (the public interest stage) requires the prosecutor to be satisfied that the prosecution is in the public interest. The case will not proceed unless both stages of the test are met.

The CPS provides legal guidance to assist prosecutors in charging cases involving fatal road traffic collisions. It outlines the charging standards and factors for consideration when prosecution decisions are taken.

In order to ensure consistency of approach, charging decisions in all fatal collision cases are required to be approved by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP), a Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor (DCCP), or a senior decision-maker nominated for the role by the CCP or DCCP.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
23rd Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what assessment she has made of the adequacy of the Crown Prosecution Services threshold for deciding whether to prosecute road death offences.

The threshold for deciding whether to prosecute offences relating to fatal road traffic collisions in Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) cases is the same threshold that is used for all offences.

The CPS, in making decisions on whether or not a case should be prosecuted, will always apply the two-stage test set out in the Code for Crown Prosecutors (the Code).

The Code is issued by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) under section 10 of the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985 and gives guidance to prosecutors on the general principles to be applied when making decisions about prosecutions. It has been the subject of frequent reviews and public consultations, most recently in 2018, when the eighth edition was published.

The first stage of the two-stage test for prosecution (the evidential stage) requires the prosecutor to be satisfied that there is a realistic prospect of conviction on the evidence. The second stage (the public interest stage) requires the prosecutor to be satisfied that the prosecution is in the public interest. The case will not proceed unless both stages of the test are met.

The CPS guidance on Road Traffic - Charging assists prosecutors in charging cases involving fatal road traffic collisions. It outlines the charging standards and factors for consideration when prosecution decisions are taken.

In order to ensure consistency of approach, charging decisions in all fatal collision cases are required to be approved by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP), a Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor (DCCP), or a senior decision-maker nominated for the role by the CCP or DCCP.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
21st Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how much her Department spent on consultancy fees in each of the last five years.

The Attorney’s General Office spent £7,000 in the 2020/21 financial year and £4,450 in the 2021/22 financial year on consultancy services. The figures for the last five years are available in the table below.

2017-18

2018-19

2019-20

2020-21

2021-22

£0

£0

£0

£7,000

£4,450

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, with reference to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) guidance on the Full Code Test within the document entitled The Code for Crown Prosecutors, published on 26 October 2018, whether the CPS applies the same survival rate threshold when making charging decisions for people who are trained or licensed (a) doctors, (b) nurses and (c) other medical practitioners.

The evidential threshold that is applied by the CPS when making charging decisions is the same threshold that is applied in all cases, for all offences and for all suspects. There is no separate threshold that is applied for different types of suspects, such as trained or licensed doctors, nurses and other medical practitioners.

The Code for Crown Prosecutors (the Code) is issued by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) under section 10 of the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985. The Code gives guidance to prosecutors on the general principles to be applied when making decisions about prosecutions.

Prosecutors must only start or continue a prosecution when the case has passed both stages of the Full Code Test (FCT), which is set out at section 4 of the Code. The FCT has two stages, the evidential stage, followed by the public interest stage.

At the evidential stage, prosecutors must be satisfied that there is sufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction. The Code provides further guidance on how the evidential stage should be assessed.

If the case passes the evidential stage, prosecutors must go on to consider whether a prosecution is required in the public interest. The Code provides a series of questions that prosecutors should consider when applying the public interest stage.

When making charging decisions, prosecutors must also comply with any guidelines issued by the Attorney General, and with the policies and guidance of the CPS. CPS guidance contains further evidential and public interest factors for specific offences and is available for the public to view on the CPS website.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
22nd Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, on how many occasions the Charity Commission asked her Department for a reference to the Charity Tribunal in each year since 2010; and how many and what proportion of those requests were (a) granted and (b) rejected.

As set out in the Attorney General’s written evidence to the Charities Bill Special Public Bill Committee on 6 October 2021, there have been three occasions on which the Charity Commission has asked for a reference to the Charity Tribunal. In two of these cases the Attorney General agreed with the Charity Commission and took the proceedings forward. In one case the Attorney General refused consent. There have been no further requests.

The full written evidence submission is available here.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
15th Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many employees of the Serious Fraud Office were deployed to combat money laundering created through waste crime as of 15 June 2022.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) does not structure its employees around particular categories of financial crime and therefore does not hold data on the number of employees deployed to combat money laundering created through waste crime.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
14th Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what steps she is taking to ensure that the Crown Prosecution Service is adequately resourced to prosecute hate crime against members of religious minority communities.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) recognises the serious impact hate crimes have on peoples’ lives and will always seek to prosecute where there is sufficient evidence to do so, regardless of the offence, or how it is committed. In 2021/22, the proportion of successful outcomes in religiously aggravated hate crime with an announced and recorded sentence uplift was 79.8%.

Each CPS Area has a Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor as a strategic hate crime lead and a network of dedicated Hate Crime Coordinators operates across all 14 CPS Areas, providing their expertise on matters relating to hate crime and acting as a local point of contact for all external partner agencies.

In addition, the CPS has created a hate crime External Consultation Group, which is responsible for providing a community perspective on CPS activity, providing an important check and balance in respect of CPS casework quality, and includes representatives from Tell MAMA and the Community Security Trust (CST).

The CPS also sits on the cross-government working groups on anti-Muslim Hatred and on Antisemitism.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
9th Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how much has been spent from the public purse on the procurement of external legal advice by her Department in each month from the 1 June 2021 to 31 May 2022.

First Treasury Counsel is a senior self-employed advocate who undertakes civil litigation and advisory work for all Government departments. The Attorney General appoints First Treasury Counsel through a fair and open competition. First Treasury Counsel’s responsibilities are:

  • To be the Government’s main advocate in civil litigation affecting the Crown. First Treasury Counsel has responsibility for dealing with the wide range of litigation affecting the Government. First Treasury Counsel will help to shape the way that the Government handles its litigation and as a result will help to shape the way that public law develops.
  • To advise civil servants and Ministers in conference and in writing.
  • To play a key role in leading the Attorney General’s panels and to participate in the selection of panel members.
  • To speak at training events and conferences for members of the Government Legal Service.
  • To play an important role in advising the Government. It is therefore important that First Treasury Counsel is able to give sound, practical and robust legal advice to Ministers and can inspire their confidence.
  • To appear before a wide range of Courts in some of the most important public law cases of the day. First Treasury Counsel must be able to inspire the Judiciary’s confidence both as regards legal ability and integrity.

First Treasury Counsel is appointed on the basis that:

  • They must do exclusively Government work for the duration of their appointment;
  • No particular level of work or remuneration is guaranteed;
  • They are self-employed;
  • They must have dedicated administrative support within their chambers/office to support a very busy and varied practice as First Treasury Counsel; and
  • The period of appointment is indefinite and terminable by either side at any time.

Whether and how often the Attorney General seeks and receives external legal advice relates to her function as a Law Officer and chief legal adviser to the Government. It is a longstanding convention, accepted by governments of all parties, not to disclose whether the Law Officers have been asked to give legal advice, have given legal advice, or the contents of any such advice.

This convention protects the Law Officers’ ability to give full and frank legal advice on some of the most contentious and difficult issues the Government may consider.

Within the limits of that convention, it is possible to say that, due to the volume and significance of the litigation and legal issues where First Treasury Counsel is instructed for the government, the Attorney General or the members of her Office have frequent contact with First Treasury Counsel.

The Attorney General and the Attorney General’s Office are subject to the same requirements and oversight in relation to the use of public funds as any other minister or Government department, as set out in the relevant guidance from HM Treasury.

Suella Braverman
Attorney General
9th Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, when she last held a meeting in person with the First Treasury Counsel to discuss (a) priority issues within the remit of her Department and (b) his work responsibilities and performance.

First Treasury Counsel is a senior self-employed advocate who undertakes civil litigation and advisory work for all Government departments. The Attorney General appoints First Treasury Counsel through a fair and open competition. First Treasury Counsel’s responsibilities are:

  • To be the Government’s main advocate in civil litigation affecting the Crown. First Treasury Counsel has responsibility for dealing with the wide range of litigation affecting the Government. First Treasury Counsel will help to shape the way that the Government handles its litigation and as a result will help to shape the way that public law develops.
  • To advise civil servants and Ministers in conference and in writing.
  • To play a key role in leading the Attorney General’s panels and to participate in the selection of panel members.
  • To speak at training events and conferences for members of the Government Legal Service.
  • To play an important role in advising the Government. It is therefore important that First Treasury Counsel is able to give sound, practical and robust legal advice to Ministers and can inspire their confidence.
  • To appear before a wide range of Courts in some of the most important public law cases of the day. First Treasury Counsel must be able to inspire the Judiciary’s confidence both as regards legal ability and integrity.

First Treasury Counsel is appointed on the basis that:

  • They must do exclusively Government work for the duration of their appointment;
  • No particular level of work or remuneration is guaranteed;
  • They are self-employed;
  • They must have dedicated administrative support within their chambers/office to support a very busy and varied practice as First Treasury Counsel; and
  • The period of appointment is indefinite and terminable by either side at any time.

Whether and how often the Attorney General seeks and receives external legal advice relates to her function as a Law Officer and chief legal adviser to the Government. It is a longstanding convention, accepted by governments of all parties, not to disclose whether the Law Officers have been asked to give legal advice, have given legal advice, or the contents of any such advice.

This convention protects the Law Officers’ ability to give full and frank legal advice on some of the most contentious and difficult issues the Government may consider.

Within the limits of that convention, it is possible to say that, due to the volume and significance of the litigation and legal issues where First Treasury Counsel is instructed for the government, the Attorney General or the members of her Office have frequent contact with First Treasury Counsel.

The Attorney General and the Attorney General’s Office are subject to the same requirements and oversight in relation to the use of public funds as any other minister or Government department, as set out in the relevant guidance from HM Treasury.

Suella Braverman
Attorney General
9th Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, if she will publish the (a) description of responsibilities and (b) terms of reference under which the First Treasury Counsel is currently employed by her Department.

First Treasury Counsel is a senior self-employed advocate who undertakes civil litigation and advisory work for all Government departments. The Attorney General appoints First Treasury Counsel through a fair and open competition. First Treasury Counsel’s responsibilities are:

  • To be the Government’s main advocate in civil litigation affecting the Crown. First Treasury Counsel has responsibility for dealing with the wide range of litigation affecting the Government. First Treasury Counsel will help to shape the way that the Government handles its litigation and as a result will help to shape the way that public law develops.
  • To advise civil servants and Ministers in conference and in writing.
  • To play a key role in leading the Attorney General’s panels and to participate in the selection of panel members.
  • To speak at training events and conferences for members of the Government Legal Service.
  • To play an important role in advising the Government. It is therefore important that First Treasury Counsel is able to give sound, practical and robust legal advice to Ministers and can inspire their confidence.
  • To appear before a wide range of Courts in some of the most important public law cases of the day. First Treasury Counsel must be able to inspire the Judiciary’s confidence both as regards legal ability and integrity.

First Treasury Counsel is appointed on the basis that:

  • They must do exclusively Government work for the duration of their appointment;
  • No particular level of work or remuneration is guaranteed;
  • They are self-employed;
  • They must have dedicated administrative support within their chambers/office to support a very busy and varied practice as First Treasury Counsel; and
  • The period of appointment is indefinite and terminable by either side at any time.

Whether and how often the Attorney General seeks and receives external legal advice relates to her function as a Law Officer and chief legal adviser to the Government. It is a longstanding convention, accepted by governments of all parties, not to disclose whether the Law Officers have been asked to give legal advice, have given legal advice, or the contents of any such advice.

This convention protects the Law Officers’ ability to give full and frank legal advice on some of the most contentious and difficult issues the Government may consider.

Within the limits of that convention, it is possible to say that, due to the volume and significance of the litigation and legal issues where First Treasury Counsel is instructed for the government, the Attorney General or the members of her Office have frequent contact with First Treasury Counsel.

The Attorney General and the Attorney General’s Office are subject to the same requirements and oversight in relation to the use of public funds as any other minister or Government department, as set out in the relevant guidance from HM Treasury.

Suella Braverman
Attorney General
9th Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, with reference to the Answer of 3 July 2013 to Question 162424, whether it is her assessment that the issue of the UK’s legal obligations under the Northern Ireland Protocol falls into the category of being a particularly complex and sensitive matter.

The Government published a legal statement on 13 June 2022 summarising its position that planned legislation to address elements of the Northern Ireland Protocol is lawful under international law. As the Government’s legal statement makes clear, this is a genuinely exceptional situation against the challenging, complex and unique circumstances of Northern Ireland. Whilst it would not be appropriate to comment specifically on the content of the advice or who has given it, the government commissions a range of advice from appropriate specialists, and we have done so in this case.

Suella Braverman
Attorney General
25th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to improve the conviction rate for burglaries in (1) Gloucestershire, (2) Somerset, (3) Devon, and (4) Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, over the next three years.

Burglary is a terrible crime which can have a long-lasting impact on victims. The CPS is committed to bringing robust prosecutions against offenders who commit the offence of burglary and works with the police to ensure that the strongest possible evidence is put before the court. In 2020-21, the CPS prosecuted 8,703 cases of burglary with a conviction rate of 87.4%. CPS South West, which covers the above regions, had a conviction rate of 91.2%, which is above the national average.

Lord Stewart of Dirleton
Advocate General for Scotland
24th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, with reference to the readout of the Cabinet meeting by the Prime Minister's spokesman on 24 May 2022, if she will publish the (a) revised guidance given to the Government Legal Department on the type of service it is tasked with providing to other departments and (b) previous guidance that it has replaced.

The Attorney General commissioned a review into the Government Legal Department in October 2020. This was an internal review and as such it is not suitable for publication.

The Legal Risk Guidance is a fundamental document lawyers in government use in all aspects of their work. It was recently refreshed in light of the collective experience of Ministers and lawyers of its practical application.

The updated guidance will be published shortly.

The previous version is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-note-on-legal-risk

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
24th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, with reference to the readout of the Cabinet meeting by the Prime Minister's spokesman on 24 May 2022, who conducted the review into the performance of the Government Legal Department; what the terms of reference were for that review; and whether a copy of the review findings will be laid before Parliament.

The Attorney General commissioned a review into the Government Legal Department in October 2020. This was an internal review and as such it is not suitable for publication.

The Legal Risk Guidance is a fundamental document lawyers in government use in all aspects of their work. It was recently refreshed in light of the collective experience of Ministers and lawyers of its practical application.

The updated guidance will be published shortly.

The previous version is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-note-on-legal-risk

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
25th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, with reference to the guidance issued by the Crown Prosecution Service on 4 November 2021 entitled Gang related offences - Decision making in, whether she has made an assessment of the potential effect of the guidance on the use of the term gang by prosecutors during proceedings.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) guidance urges caution about the use of the word ‘gang’, explaining how it can properly be deployed in a prosecution, where substantiated by the evidence and relevant to a matter in issue in the proceedings. In drafting the guidance, the CPS assessed the potential effect of using ‘gang’ in proceedings and identified that the term is used in legislation and by criminal justice partners. The guidance clearly sets out that, given the negative connotations of the term ‘gang’, prosecutors should not refer to a group as a ‘gang’ in proceedings unless there is evidence to support the assertion. However, prosecutors must also ensure that where there is admissible evidence of gang membership, the case is put on a basis that reflects the often very serious gravity of the offending.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
23rd May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, with reference to the Answers of 7 April 2022 to Question 147025 and 26 April 2022 to Question 156349, on Department for Work and Pensions: Freedom of Information, if she will instruct the Government Legal Service to undertake an assessment of the basis for the Department for Work and Pensions' decision to withhold publication of the Prime Minister’s Implementation Unit’s report on the experiences of vulnerable people who have been claiming Universal Credit.

No investigation will be carried out by the Government Legal Profession.

If a person making a request under the Freedom of Information Act (2000) is not satisfied with a response, they may exercise their statutory rights of challenge under the Act, complaining to the ICO and then appealing to the First-tier Tribunal.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
26th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what recent assessment she has made of the effectiveness of the CPS in ensuring access to justice for the victims of crime.

In 2021, the CPS prosecuted: 69 alleged terrorists of which 63 were convicted. Over 19,000 alleged violent crimes, with a conviction rate of over 75%. Over 10,000 hate crimes, nearly 11,000 domestic abuse crimes and in that same year the Government introduced a Victims Code to ensure that victims are placed at the heart of the criminal justice system and that their voices are heard.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
26th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what steps she is taking to increase prosecution rates for (a) sexual assault and (b) rape offences.

This Government is determined to increase the number of rape and sexual assault cases going to court.

The CPS is undertaking extensive work to drive up and improve prosecutions through its Joint National RASSO Action Plan with the police, the Rape Strategy, and the Operation Soteria Path Finders, which are testing methods for best practice in six CPS Areas.

Since publication of its strategy, the CPS has continued to see increases in the number of rape charges, prosecutions and convictions.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
26th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what steps the Government is taking to improve prosecution rates for (a) fraud and (b) economic crime.

In the year ending September 2021, the CPS prosecuted 7,609 defendants where Fraud and Forgery were the principal offence. 84.9% of those defendants were convicted. In the last five years, the SFO secured reparations for criminal behaviour for organisations it investigated totalling over £1.3bn.

The CPS deploy a network of prosecutors around the world to help extradite suspects and secure the evidence needed to bring criminals to justice in this jurisdiction.

The Government has introduced the Online Safety Bill, requiring all companies to take robust action against illegal content. Companies will need to remove material that amounts to an offence in the UK regardless of where in the world it originated.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
23rd May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, if she will continue and expand the use of remote working for the Crown Prosecution Service to help tackle the caseload backlog.

During the pandemic, the criminal justice system developed digitally enabled remote hearing capability, at pace, so that court-related activity could continue to the greatest degree possible.

The CPS has a fully digital casework process, and previously invested in a robust technology infrastructure which has enabled CPS staff to work remotely and engage virtually in court proceedings during this challenging period.

Recognising that listing is a judicial function, the continued development of technology, and its use to facilitate remote attendance in appropriate circumstances, presents an opportunity for gains in efficiency and flexibility in the deployment of work and people.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
18th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will place in the Library of the House a copy of the legal opinion the Attorney General received on disapplying parts of the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland.

It is a longstanding convention, accepted by governments of all parties, not to disclose outside government whether the Law Officers have given legal advice or the contents of any advice. This convention protects the Law Officers’ ability to give full and frank legal advice on some of the most contentious and difficult issues the Government will be considering.

Lord Stewart of Dirleton
Advocate General for Scotland
16th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to direct the Serious Fraud Office to review its handling of the case of Tom Hayes; and, further to the judgment of the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in United States V. DB Group Services (UK) Limited (and Deutsche Bank AG) which found that the rigging of Libor interest rates was not against the rules, whether they will ask the Criminal Cases Review Commission to reconsider its decision not to refer Tom Hayes’s case back to the Court of Appeal.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) is an operationally independent body. The Attorney General is responsible for safeguarding the independent decision making of the SFO, to maintain this independence the Attorney General cannot overturn a decision reached by the SFO in a particular case.

The Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) is an independent arm’s length body who consider cases where people believe they have been wrongly convicted or wrongly sentenced. It would be inappropriate for the Government or the SFO to ask the CCRC to reconsider any decision they have made, including in the case of Tom Hayes.

Lord Stewart of Dirleton
Advocate General for Scotland
16th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Stewart of Dirleton on 6 April (HL7312), what assessment they have made of the judgment of the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in United States V. DB Group Services (UK) Limited (and Deutsche Bank AG) which found that the rigging of Libor interest rates was not against the rules.

There has been no further assessment made on the judgment of the US Court of Appeal in these cases.

Lord Stewart of Dirleton
Advocate General for Scotland
20th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, pursuant to the Answer of 20 May 2022 to Question 2413, on Northern Ireland Protocol: Legal Opinion, whether she has asked the Prime Minister to initiate an investigation into how the fact and content of her advice on the Northern Ireland Protocol came to be reported in the media on 11 May 2022; and whether that reporting constituted a breach of paragraph 2.13 of the Ministerial Code.

It would not be appropriate to comment on this media speculation. It is a longstanding convention, accepted by governments of all parties, not to disclose whether the Law Officers have given legal advice or the contents of any advice. This convention protects the Law Officers’ ability to give full and frank legal advice on some of the most contentious and difficult issues the Government will be considering.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
18th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what assessment his Department has made of the impact of disclosure requirements on (a) police and (b) Crown Prosecution Service workloads.

Disclosure remains one of the most important and complex issues in the criminal justice system, and it is a priority for this Government to encourage improvements in disclosure practice in order to ensure the disclosure regime operates effectively, fairly, and justly. The first annual review of the operation of the Attorney General’s Guidelines on Disclosure has just been completed and will be published imminently. That review involved close collaboration with policing, the CPS and others in the criminal justice system and has led to some important amendments to the guidelines which should aid front line policing, particularly in relation to the development of an annex on redaction.

The new approach of the Guidelines gives clear guidance on only providing relevant information to the CPS, for example by cutting footage from body worn video or only including relevant message chains not an entire phone image. In this way there is less to redact, thereby helping the burden felt by front line policing and the CPS.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what assessment has she made of international support for Ukraine’s domestic war crimes investigations and prosecutions.

The Government stands side-by-side with Ukraine in its domestic war crimes investigations and prosecutions. I have a close relationship with Ukrainian Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova, and met her and her team in person in Ukraine on 9 May 2022, to better understand how the UK and the international community can support Ukraine in its search for justice and accountability for Russia’s actions in its illegal invasion.

The Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s Office has opened over 12,000 case files and has hundreds of suspects. The UK and its allies are determined to provide practical and technical expertise to support their investigations. I have appointed Sir Howard Morrison QC, one of the UK’s leading war crimes lawyers and a former judge at the International Criminal Court, as an Independent Adviser to Prosecutor General Venediktova. My visit to Ukraine was also to lead a delegation of war crimes experts, who remained in Poland to meet international partners, NGOs, and other stakeholders to scope out the assistance the UK can provide. The Government and the UK’s wider operational bodies are carefully considering what support we can provide.

I know that our allies are equally supportive. Earlier this month I convened a meeting of the Quintet of Attorneys General from the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, with Prosecutor General Venediktova. Following this meeting, we have published a joint statement which makes clear our countries’ support for Ukraine’s domestics war crimes investigations and prosecutions, and our commitment to work together with the Prosecutor General and her Office to ensure every perpetrator faces justice.

Suella Braverman
Attorney General
19th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many people the CPS has acquitted on the defence of automatism in England and Wales as of 19th May 2022.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) does not maintain a central record of any defence employed by defendants in criminal proceedings. This information could only be obtained by an examination of CPS case files, which would incur disproportionate cost.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what recent assessment she has made of the performance of the Crown Prosecution Service in (a) London South, (b) London North, (c) East of England, (d) Yorkshire and Humberside and (e) Wessex.

Since February, Her Majesty’s Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate (HMCPSI) have published reports on the performance of 5 CPS Areas: London South, London North, East of England, Yorkshire and Humberside, and Wessex.

Despite the pressures of the pandemic, the reports found improvement had been made in all the Areas. In the two London Areas, increasing caseloads and challenges in recruitment were both acknowledged by HMCPSI. However, inspectors noted that both Areas added value in aspects of their work with victims and witnesses.

In East of England and Wessex, inspectors praised both Areas for their joint working with other criminal justice agencies and found quality decision-making around disclosure of unused material.

The Rape and Serious Sexual Offences (RASSO) team in Yorkshire and Humberside were commended for seeking appropriate orders to protect complainants, witnesses and the public and consulting with witnesses in RASSO cases.

Although inspectors highlighted where improvements could be made, there were aspects of strength for all the Areas, which reflects the determination of the CPS to drive improvements.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what recent assessment has she made of the ability of the CPS to effectively prosecute cases of stalking and coercive behaviour.

This Government takes stalking and coercive behaviour very seriously. Since the implementation of legislation, the number of stalking and coercive behaviour cases brought to court has increased year on year.

To further improve the handling of these important cases the CPS has committed to key actions in the VAWG strategy and has recently published an updated programme of work on Domestic Abuse to help narrow the disparity between reporting and criminal justice outcomes, helping to secure justice in every possible case.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what steps she is taking to ensure that correspondence sent by the CPS to victims of crime is suitable in tone and content.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) fully recognises the importance of clear and open explanations of its decision-making, especially to victims of crime. The CPS’ Victim Communication and Liaison scheme ensures that timely letters are sent to victims when a significant decision has been made on their case. These letters have recently been revised to increase clarity of language, empathy and to introduce signposting to sources of information on the role of the CPS within the criminal justice system and victims’ rights.

The CPS recognises that it still needs to improve in its communication with victims and commissioned last year a significant piece of research to better understand victims’ needs. It is using those findings, together with stakeholder engagement, to inform its future work on improving their communications with victims.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what steps the Government is taking to improve prosecution rates for (a) fraud and (b) other economic crime.

In the last financial year, the Serious Fraud Office prosecuted two corporates, recovered over £45m in proceeds of crime and agreed three Deferred Prosecution Agreements. Between February 2022 and January 2023, the SFO has eight trials; 23 people have been charged with criminality worth over £550m.

The Law Officers meet regularly with senior officials at the Serious Fraud Office to discuss strategy and funding; through these meetings, as well as regular engagement between my Office and the Serious Fraud Office, I am confident that the organisation has the resource required for those trials.

The Government is committed to tackling fraud and economic crime, and the 10-year Fraud Strategy that will be published this year will set out plans to address the threat of fraud including the prosecution of fraudsters.

The majority of Serious Fraud Office cases already pass the ‘no case to answer’ stage. This is when the Judge rules that the prosecution’s evidence is sufficient, the trial will proceed to enable a jury to consider its verdict. It is not within the gift of the Serious Fraud Office, or the Government, to influence this.

In addition to the Fraud Strategy, the Serious Fraud Office received a funding uplift in the 2021 Spending Review, which included £4.4m over three years to invest in technology. This investment will complement the wider work that they are doing to reduce case lengths over the same period. This will have a positive impact on the SFO’s capacity to tackle serious economic crime.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what recent assessment has she made of the Serious Fraud Office's capacity to tackle serious economic crime in 2022-23.

In the last financial year, the Serious Fraud Office prosecuted two corporates, recovered over £45m in proceeds of crime and agreed three Deferred Prosecution Agreements. Between February 2022 and January 2023, the SFO has eight trials; 23 people have been charged with criminality worth over £550m.

The Law Officers meet regularly with senior officials at the Serious Fraud Office to discuss strategy and funding; through these meetings, as well as regular engagement between my Office and the Serious Fraud Office, I am confident that the organisation has the resource required for those trials.

The Government is committed to tackling fraud and economic crime, and the 10-year Fraud Strategy that will be published this year will set out plans to address the threat of fraud including the prosecution of fraudsters.

The majority of Serious Fraud Office cases already pass the ‘no case to answer’ stage. This is when the Judge rules that the prosecution’s evidence is sufficient, the trial will proceed to enable a jury to consider its verdict. It is not within the gift of the Serious Fraud Office, or the Government, to influence this.

In addition to the Fraud Strategy, the Serious Fraud Office received a funding uplift in the 2021 Spending Review, which included £4.4m over three years to invest in technology. This investment will complement the wider work that they are doing to reduce case lengths over the same period. This will have a positive impact on the SFO’s capacity to tackle serious economic crime.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, whether she was personally involved in the most recent process of deciding which individual or organisation should be paid out of public funds for the provision of external legal advice on matters relating to the Northern Ireland Protocol.

Whether or not the Attorney General sought advice from external counsel in this case, and associated information, relates to her function as a Law Officer and chief legal adviser to the Government. It is a longstanding convention, accepted by governments of all parties, not to disclose whether the Law Officers have given legal advice or the contents of any advice. This convention protects the Law Officers’ ability to give full and frank legal advice on some of the most contentious and difficult issues the Government will be considering.

The Attorney General and the Attorney General’s Office are subject to the same requirements and oversight in relation to the use of public funds as any other minister and Government department respectively, as set out in relevant guidance from HM Treasury.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, whether details of the Government's most recent procurement of external legal advice on matters relating to the Northern Ireland Protocol have been published on the Contracts Finder website; and if she will publish (a) the award letter and (b) the statement of requirements arising from that procurement process.

Whether or not the Attorney General sought advice from external counsel in this case, and associated information, relates to her function as a Law Officer and chief legal adviser to the Government. It is a longstanding convention, accepted by governments of all parties, not to disclose whether the Law Officers have given legal advice or the contents of any advice. This convention protects the Law Officers’ ability to give full and frank legal advice on some of the most contentious and difficult issues the Government will be considering.

The Attorney General and the Attorney General’s Office are subject to the same requirements and oversight in relation to the use of public funds as any other minister and Government department respectively, as set out in relevant guidance from HM Treasury.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, whether the cost of the most recent external legal advice procured by the Government on matters relating to the Northern Ireland Protocol was above or below the level that would normally require a competitive tender process under the provisions of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015, and associated guidance.

Whether or not the Attorney General sought advice from external counsel in this case, and associated information, relates to her function as a Law Officer and chief legal adviser to the Government. It is a longstanding convention, accepted by governments of all parties, not to disclose whether the Law Officers have given legal advice or the contents of any advice. This convention protects the Law Officers’ ability to give full and frank legal advice on some of the most contentious and difficult issues the Government will be considering.

The Attorney General and the Attorney General’s Office are subject to the same requirements and oversight in relation to the use of public funds as any other minister and Government department respectively, as set out in relevant guidance from HM Treasury.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
11th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many allegations of fraud have been reported to Serious Fraud Office in each of the last ten years.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) does not hold the data on the estimated value of fraud reported to the Office over the last 10 years.

Referrals received by the SFO, whilst alleging crime, often do not provide an estimate of loss or actual loss reported. Identifying the true value of reported fraud requires investigation.

The SFO receives approximately 1,200 referrals of alleged criminality every year. These range in seriousness and come from a variety of sources, including the public, whistle-blowers and corporate referrals.

Every referral the SFO receives is researched and/or assessed to help determine if it is a matter that the SFO should investigate.

The SFO only takes on only the most complex fraud and bribery cases. Should a referral not meet the reasonable suspicion threshold and the Director’s Statement of Principle, it may be referred to another law enforcement agency or discontinued.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
11th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what the estimated value of the reports of serious or complex fraud, as defined within the remit of the Serious Fraud Office, has been in each of the last ten calendar years.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) does not hold the data on the estimated value of fraud reported to the Office over the last 10 years.

Referrals received by the SFO, whilst alleging crime, often do not provide an estimate of loss or actual loss reported. Identifying the true value of reported fraud requires investigation.

The SFO receives approximately 1,200 referrals of alleged criminality every year. These range in seriousness and come from a variety of sources, including the public, whistle-blowers and corporate referrals.

Every referral the SFO receives is researched and/or assessed to help determine if it is a matter that the SFO should investigate.

The SFO only takes on only the most complex fraud and bribery cases. Should a referral not meet the reasonable suspicion threshold and the Director’s Statement of Principle, it may be referred to another law enforcement agency or discontinued.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
11th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what the individual value of each (a) fine and (b) Deferred Prosecution Agreement issued by the Serious Fraud Office was in the last ten years.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) opened a total of 49 criminal cases from January 2016 until December 2021. Ten (10) cases were opened in 2016, eleven (11) cases were opened in 2017, ten (10) cases were opened in 2018, five (5) case were opened in 2019, eight (8) cases were opened in 2020, and five (5) cases were opened in 2021.

These numbers do not include cases that are related to the SFO’s Proceeds of Crime, International Assistance and/or Mutual Legal Assistance efforts.

The below table shows the fines issued by the SFO since 2016:

Date of Outcome

Monetary value of fine or financial penalty

January 2016

£1,136,799

February 2016

£1,400,000

June 2016

£6,375,000

October 2017

£20,000

October 2017

£20,000

October 2017

£20,000

January 2019

£5,000

January 2019

£20,000

January 2019

£15,000

June 2019

£850,000

November 2019

£15,000,000

January 2020

£800

April 2021

£7,521,920

October 2021

£47,197,640

The SFO does not hold data on fines issued prior to 2016. These results do not include costs awarded to the SFO nor any confiscation orders.

Deferred Prosecution Agreements (DPAs) were introduced on 24 February 2014, under the provisions of Schedule 17 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013. They are available to the Crown Prosecution Service and the Serious Fraud Office. Since 2014 the SFO has entered in to a total of 12 DPAs.

Date of Outcome

Currency

Total (Per DPA)

November 2015

US$

32,576,197

July 2016

GBP£

6,553,085

January 2017

GBP£

510,252,645

April 2017

GBP£

132,062,451

July 2019

GBP£

22,900,000

October 2019

GBP£

2,069,861

January 2020

EUR€

990,963,712

July 2020

GBP£

44,400,000

October 2020

GBP£

2,979,686

July 2021

GBP£

103,310,424

July 2021

GBP£

1,994,071

July 2021

GBP£

515,994

The above includes all financial amounts within each DPA, which could consist of:

  • Financial Penalty
  • Disgorgement of Profits
  • Compensation
  • Cost Awards to the SFO

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
11th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many investigations the Serious Fraud Office has opened in each calendar year between 1 January 2016 and 31 December 2021.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) opened a total of 49 criminal cases from January 2016 until December 2021. Ten (10) cases were opened in 2016, eleven (11) cases were opened in 2017, ten (10) cases were opened in 2018, five (5) case were opened in 2019, eight (8) cases were opened in 2020, and five (5) cases were opened in 2021.

These numbers do not include cases that are related to the SFO’s Proceeds of Crime, International Assistance and/or Mutual Legal Assistance efforts.

The below table shows the fines issued by the SFO since 2016:

Date of Outcome

Monetary value of fine or financial penalty

January 2016

£1,136,799

February 2016

£1,400,000

June 2016

£6,375,000

October 2017

£20,000

October 2017

£20,000

October 2017

£20,000

January 2019

£5,000

January 2019

£20,000

January 2019

£15,000

June 2019

£850,000

November 2019

£15,000,000

January 2020

£800

April 2021

£7,521,920

October 2021

£47,197,640

The SFO does not hold data on fines issued prior to 2016. These results do not include costs awarded to the SFO nor any confiscation orders.

Deferred Prosecution Agreements (DPAs) were introduced on 24 February 2014, under the provisions of Schedule 17 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013. They are available to the Crown Prosecution Service and the Serious Fraud Office. Since 2014 the SFO has entered in to a total of 12 DPAs.

Date of Outcome

Currency

Total (Per DPA)

November 2015

US$

32,576,197

July 2016

GBP£

6,553,085

January 2017

GBP£

510,252,645

April 2017

GBP£

132,062,451

July 2019

GBP£

22,900,000

October 2019

GBP£

2,069,861

January 2020

EUR€

990,963,712

July 2020

GBP£

44,400,000

October 2020

GBP£

2,979,686

July 2021

GBP£

103,310,424

July 2021

GBP£

1,994,071

July 2021

GBP£

515,994

The above includes all financial amounts within each DPA, which could consist of:

  • Financial Penalty
  • Disgorgement of Profits
  • Compensation
  • Cost Awards to the SFO

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
12th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what steps she is taking to help support police officers in (a) Leicestershire and (b) nationally with the delivery of the additional obligations for disclosure at the pre-charge stage under the 6th edition of the Director’s Guidance on Charging.

The current version of the Director’s Guidance on Charging (DG6) is the sixth version and reflects significant changes in the way that cases are investigated, charged, and prosecuted since the last edition was published in 2013. Those changes include those revisions made by Attorney General’s Guidelines on Disclosure 2020, and the revised Codes of Practice 2020 issued under the Criminal Procedure and Investigations Act 1996​ (CPIA).

The first annual review of the operation of the disclosure guidelines has just been completed and will be published imminently. That review involved close collaboration with policing, the CPS and others in the criminal justice system and has led to some important amendments to the guidelines which should aid front line policing, particularly in relation to the development of an annex on redaction. The new approach of the Guidelines gives clear guidance on only providing relevant information to the CPS, for example by cutting footage from BWV or only including relevant message chains not an entire phone image. In this way there is less to redact, thereby helping the burden felt by front line policing. Further, the new, dedicated, annex on redaction sets out in detail and with examples how to apply the relevance, necessity and proportionality requirements. It also gives investigators direction on how to consider where redaction would be disproportionate due to time, resourcing and by taking counter measures such as enhanced security on document they provide to the CPS.

The section on accessing Third Party Material (TPM) has also been amended to include requirements that clear, pre-existing and recorded reasons must be present for any TPM request. Not only must requests be necessary and proportionate, but the Guidelines breakdown the relevant considerations for weighing necessity and proportionality to direct investigators and prosecutors to consider each issue in detail. For example: officers are directed to ringfence information to preserve it but not access it until necessary, and to examine alternative methods for accessing the same information without intruding into complainant or witness privacy wherever possible. There is also now a clear requirement to give ongoing, comprehensible and detailed information to those people whose information is accessed during investigations, which will help alleviate victims’ concerns about disproportionate and excessive requests.

The requirements in DG6 will be updated to reflect the upcoming changes made to the Attorney General’s guidelines and the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), the College of Policing and the CPS are working together through a National Disclosure Improvement Plan (NDIP) Working Group to implement the Attorney General’s Guidelines on Disclosure. That group includes a representative from Leicestershire police. The NDIP group is accountable to the Joint Operational Improvement Board (JOIB), a national Board chaired by senior leaders from the CPS, National Police Chiefs' Council and College of Policing, created to drive up standards in the criminal justice system and improve joint working in areas including disclosure. The Board’s work is mirrored locally by Joint Operational Improvement Meetings at police force and local CPS Area level.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
12th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what legal advice has she received on the Government’s proposals to adjust or remove the Northern Ireland Protocol.

It is a longstanding convention, accepted by governments of all parties, not to disclose whether the Attorney General has given legal advice or the contents of any advice. This extends to not commenting on the content of internal discussions in relation to the Attorney General’s function as a Law Officer and chief legal adviser to the Government. This convention protects the Law Officers’ ability to give full and frank legal advice on some of the most contentious and difficult issues the Government will be considering.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
11th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what proportion of total reported fraud cases have fallen under the remit of (a) the Serious Fraud Office and (b) other law enforcement agencies over the last twelve month period for which figures are available.

Neither of the Law Officers Department’s responsible for prosecuting fraud cases, the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), hold data requested. Reported crime data is collated and held by the Home Office.

The SFO receives approximately 1,200 referrals of alleged criminality every year. These range in seriousness and come from a variety of sources, including the public, whistle-blowers and corporate referrals.

Every referral received is researched and/or assessed to help determine if it is a matter that the SFO should investigate.

The SFO only takes on only the most complex fraud and bribery cases. Should a referral not meet the reasonable suspicion threshold and the Director’s Statement of Principle, it may be referred to another law enforcement agency or discontinued.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
11th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what the estimated value of fraud reported to the Serious Fraud Office has been in each of the last ten years.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) does not hold the data on the estimated value of fraud reported to the Office over the last 10 years.

Referrals received by the SFO, whilst alleging crime, often do not provide an estimate of loss or actual loss reported. Identifying the true value of reported fraud requires investigation.

The SFO is committed to supporting the victims of fraud, bribery or corruption.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
11th May 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many reports of (a) serious or complex fraud, (b) bribery and (c) corruption, as defined within the remit of the Serious Fraud Office, there have been in each of the last ten years.

The SFO receives approximately 1,200 referrals of alleged criminality every year. These range in seriousness and come from a variety of sources, including the public, whistle-blowers and corporate referrals.

Every referral received is researched and/or assessed to help determine if it is a matter that the SFO should investigate.

The SFO only takes on only the most complex fraud and bribery cases. Should a referral not meet the reasonable suspicion threshold and the Director’s Statement of Principle, it may be referred to another law enforcement agency or discontinued.

The Serious Fraud Office does not hold data on reported fraud cases to other law enforcement agencies.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
21st Apr 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what is the status under UK law of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe's (a) 2016 and (b) conviction by the Revolutionary Court in Iran.

A determination of the status in UK law of the findings of courts in foreign jurisdictions is a matter for the UK courts, as and when the need arises for such a determination in domestic proceedings.

The Government is delighted that after years of detention, Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe is safely home and has been reunited with her family and loved ones.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
22nd Apr 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what the (a) total number and (b) proportion of prosecutions in each offence group is in each (i) region and (ii) local justice area of England and Wales that have stopped post-charge because a victim did not provide evidence or has withdrawn in each of the last five years.

The total number and proportion of prosecutions for cases that have stopped post-charge because a victim did not provide evidence or has withdrawn, is not publicly available for each crime type by region and local justice area of England and Wales, in the format that has been requested. Figures for victim attrition for all crime by region are included in the local criminal justice scorecards, which can be found at www.criminal-justice-scorecard.justice.gov.uk/.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
19th Apr 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many CPS (a) staff and (b) prosecutors work in the Serious Economic, Organised Crime and International Directorate as of 19 April 2022; and how many of those staff work primarily on issues of (i) international justice and organised crime, (ii) special crime and counter terrorism and (ii) fraud.

In April 2022, The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) launched a new Serious Economic, Organised Crime and International Directorate (SEOCID) which brings together specialists in economic crime, organised crime, proceeds of crime and international to deliver justice, combat crime across borders and take money from criminals.

This combined team of specialists will continue to work closely with investigators to disrupt the emerging threats of organised criminal gangs using cyber technology to exploit people, businesses, and the Government. Victims of complex SEOCID cases are often based in multiple jurisdictions. The directorate will work to improve their experience by ensuring investigators and prosecutors work closely and have a joint victim and witness strategy from the outset.

Establishing the new Serious Economic, Organised Crime and International Directorate is part of the CPS Economic Crime Strategy 2025.

The number of staff and prosecutors can be found in the table below:

Department

Head Count

FTE

HC of Prosecutors

FTE of Prosecutors

SERIOUS ECONOMIC ORGANISED CRIME INTERNATIONAL (SEOCID)

394

372.38

186.00

177.65

SPECIAL CRIME AND COUNTER TERRORISM DIVISION

146

140.29

69.00

67.10

Grand Total

540

512.66

255.00

244.76

NB: The data has been extracted from the CPS Oracle HR database and is accurate at point of enquiry on 21 April 2022. Consequent changes to data input may mean that this data will change at some point in the future.

*The system reports data as at the last day of the month rather than the first or any date in-between therefore the table is presented to the nearest reportable date to the questions asked.

*FTE figures have been rounded

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
19th Apr 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what the average number of full time equivalent civil service staff employed by the Crown Prosecution Service was in each financial year between 2010-11 and 2021-22.

The number of staff employed by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) during the periods specified is available in the table below. The data provided includes all staff grades full time equivalent averaged across each year. During this period the CPS has undertaken continuous improvement and modernisation programmes to improve efficiency and effectiveness. These included digitalisation, development of a national resourcing model, standard operating practices, resource efficiency measures, smarter/remote working practices, and establishment of remote teams. As a national service for England and Wales, the consequence of these measures is that we now have the ability to shift work to where capacity resides which is both much more efficient, and also fairer on the workforce.

Financial Year

Average Full Time Equivalent Staff

2010/11

7797

2011/12

7214

2012/13

6894

2013/14

6341

2014/15

5939

2015/16

5541

2016/17

5468

2017/18

5517

2018/19

5493

2019/20

5577

2020/21

5943

2021/22

6406

NB: The data has been extracted from the CPS Oracle HR database and is accurate at point of enquiry on 21 April 2022. Consequent changes to data input may mean that this data will change at some point in the future.

*The system reports data as at the last day of the month rather than the first or any date in-between therefore the table is presented to the nearest reportable date to the questions asked.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
19th Apr 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what the average number of full time equivalent civil service staff employed by the (a) Government Legal Department and (b)Treasury Solicitor’s Office was in each financial year between 2010-11 and 2021-22.

The average number of whole-time equivalent persons employed during each financial year (for which data is available) in the Attorney General’s Office (AGO) and Government Legal Department (GLD) is as follows.

Attorney General’s Office:

Financial Year

Total

Permanent Staff

Others

Ministers

2010-11

(Data not held)*

2011-12

40

2012-13

44

40

2

2

2013-14

42

40

2

2014-15

40

38

2

2015-16

40

38

2

2016-17

40

38

2

2017-18

44

42

2

2018-19

46

39

5

2

2019-20

49

47

2

2020-21

50

46

2

2

Treasury Solicitor’s Office (from 2010-11 to 2014-15 inclusive) and Government Legal Department (from 2015-16 to 2020-21 inclusive):

Financial Year

Total

Permanent Staff

Others

2010-11

(Data not held)*

2011-12

987

2012-13

1,046

927

119

2013-14

1,283

1,090

193

2014-15

1,667

1,426

241

2015-16

1,838

1,663

175

2016-17

1,862

1,657

205

2017-18

2,157

1,905

252

2018-19

2,362

1,998

364

2019-20

2,519

2,196

323

2020-21

2,605

2,166

439

It is important to note that several legal advisory units from departments across the civil service were incorporated into the Treasury Solicitor’s Department (TSol) and GLD account for the majority of staffing increases in the years preceding and succeeding the name change from TSol to GLD on 1 April 2015.

* The earliest Annual Report available in which these figures are published, is for the 2012-13 financial year, which also included a total whole-time equivalent figure for TSol and AGO for 2011-12.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)