Home Affairs Select Committee Slams Out-of-Court Disposals

The Home Affairs select committee have criticised police use of out-of-court disposals, stating they are used inappropriately in up to 30% of cases.

In a report published today, the committee raised concerns that persistent and serious offences were being dealt with through out-of-court disposals when they ought to have been prosecuted at court. ACS research has shown that 1 in 4 shop thieves are repeat offenders, contributing to a £35m annual loss to the sector.

ACS chief executive James Lowman said: “We are very concerned that repeat offenders of shop theft are not being dealt with effectively, continuing the falsehood that shop theft is a victimless crime. Out-of-court disposals should be reserved for first time offenders, not repeat or serious offenders. We urge the Ministry of Justice to follow the Committee’s recommendations and ensure that these penalties are used more appropriately.”

In 2014, Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary released a report revealing that almost half (44%) of victims were not being consulted on the use of out-of-court disposals. Figures also released last year showed that just 53% of PNDs (with known outcome) were paid in full – a decrease of nine percentage points compared with 2012, and a low since 2009.

The Home Affairs select committee held a short inquiry in January 2015. ACS’ submission to the review of out-of-court disposals can be found here: http://www.acs.org.uk/download/acs-submission-out-of-court-disposals-review/


This entry was posted by Victoria on Fri, 06/03/2015 - 13:48