Skip to main content

Cracked Trials

Volume 572: debated on Tuesday 17 December 2013

The number and proportion of trials which crack and the reasons for this is reported by the Ministry of Justice in quarterly court statistics. As part of the Government’s criminal justice strategy and action plan, Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service is working with the Crown Prosecution Service and the judiciary to improve performance in the summary justice system, including reducing the volume of cracked trials.

Has the number of cracked trials been in any way influenced by the reduction in the number of courts and court access?

No. The cracked trial rate in magistrates courts has remained fairly stable—between 43% and 45%—since 2006. I am happy to report that the rate in the Crown court has been falling steadily—from 43% in the third quarter of 2010 to 36% in the second quarter of 2013—so progress is being made.