Custody time limit temporarily increased amid coronavirus (COVID19)

Custody time limit temporarily increased amid coronavirus (COVID19)

The Ministry of Justice has reported that people arrested for serious crimes can spend longer in custody as they await trial under new government measures to ‘keep the public safe’ while courts recover from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Under temporary legislation set to come into force on 28 September 2020, the custody time limit will be increased from 182 days to 238 days. The legislation will apply to anyone who is arrested and remanded for an offence deemed serious enough for a Crown Court trial after that date. The new custody time limits will remain in place for nine months. At the end of the nine month period the current time lengths will resume.

The Lord Chancellor, Robert Buckland QC, also announced that £80m will be invested into the criminal courts in order to aid recovery from the pandemic. In order to boost capacity and address the backlog of cases, approximately 1,600 new staff will be employed and additional Nightingale courts will be opened.

Source: Suspected criminals held for longer as criminal courts recovery plan announced 

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