Plea Negotiation Framework for Fraud Cases

|General|Guidance

Observations of the Criminal Sub Committee of the Council of HM Circuit Judges

We recognise the difficulties that the trial of such cases presents. Frequently such cases are protracted and expensive. Currently the costs are largely met from public funds and, as stated on many occasions, the greater part of the legal aid budget has been taken up by a few lengthy and difficult matters. Further the cost to the Courts and the prolonged stress for witnesses, victims and defendants must be borne in mind.

General support of proposals that would reduce the length and expense of these trials provided that whatever is introduced is fair and in the interests of justice. There have to be adequate safeguards.