Criminal Cases Review Commission

(asked on 12th December 2023) - View Source

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask His Majesty's Government on what grounds the Criminal Cases Review Commission may refer cases to the Court of Appeal.

Answered by
Lord Bellamy Portrait
Lord Bellamy
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
This question was answered on 21st December 2023

The Criminal Cases Review Commission, funded by the Ministry of Justice, functions as an independent body, making decisions autonomously and without ministerial influence.

Under Section 13 of the Criminal Appeal Act 1995, the Court of Appeal may only quash a conviction where they consider it ‘unsafe’. The Criminal Cases Review Commission can only refer a case to the Court of Appeal, where it is satisfied there is a ‘real possibility’ that the conviction would be quashed as ‘unsafe’, or the sentence would be changed.

Existing legislation allows for cases to be referred by the CCRC in exceptional circumstances where there is no fresh evidence, fresh legal argument or where the person has not exhausted appeal routes. However, the CCRC still has to consider whether there is a real possibility that the Court of Appeal will consider it unsafe.

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