The criminal justice system was approaching ‘tipping point’ and the backlog in our Crown Courts could reach 195,000 by 2024 without action, according to a report by a crime and justice consultancy. The BBC reports that the authors of a report by Crest Advisory say the prediction is a reasonable worst case scenario but there is a ‘catastrophic risk to public confidence, and effective enforcement of the law’.
THREAD: A perfect storm: why the criminal justice system is facing an existential crisis
New analysis from Crest suggests that criminal court capacity in England & Wales will need to double to stop the backlog of cases growing to an unmanageable level over the next 4 years pic.twitter.com/OwyvMowF4L
— CREST (@CrestAdvisory) October 30, 2020
The current backlog of cases is about 45,500. Crest looked at how might change over the next four years looking at ‘the long term impact of Covid-19 on unemployment, which could see a rise in some crime; plans to recruit 20,000 additional police officers; a rise in police recorded crime based on historical trends; and the current time frames for cases at court’.
‘The conclusion of our modelling is stark,’ Crest Advisory told the BBC. ‘Covid 19, combined with long-standing legacy issues and the police uplift is leading the criminal justice system to the brink of a tipping point, beyond which it may cease to function in a meaningful sense.’
The Ministry of Justice has said that the study is based on ‘extreme assumptions’.