Allocation and sending for trial—sending of cases forthwith to the Crown Court for trial
Allocation and sending for trial—sending of cases forthwith to the Crown Court for trial

The following Corporate Crime practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Allocation and sending for trial—sending of cases forthwith to the Crown Court for trial
  • The legislative framework
  • Sending of cases forthwith to the Crown Court for trial
  • Either-way offences
  • Notices in serious or complex fraud cases: indictable offences in respect of which a notice is served under CDA 1998, s 51B
  • Notices in certain cases involving children: offences in respect of which a notice is served under CDA 1998, s 51C
  • Either-way offences related to an indictable-only offence, or one covered by a notice under CDA 1998, s 51B or CDA 1998, s 51C in respect of which the same defendant is being sent to the Crown Court
  • Either-way offence related to an indictable-only offence, or one covered by a notice under CDA 1998, s 51B or CDA 1998, s 51C in respect of which another defendant is being sent to the Crown Court

The legislative framework

Section 41 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (CJA 2003) and CJA 2003, Sch 3 significantly amended the procedure to be followed by a magistrates' court in deciding whether a case involving an offence triable either-way should be tried summarily or on indictment.

Either-way offences proceeding to the Crown Court for trial are sent forthwith without the need for committal proceedings, which were abolished. The magistrates' court will be informed of the defendant's previous convictions when first deciding whether to accept jurisdiction. There is a new power to give an indication of sentence to the defendant, at their request. The power to commit for sentence following summary trial remains.

Sending of cases forthwith to the Crown Court for trial

An adult defendant should be sent forthwith to the Crown Court in the following situations:

  1. indictable-only offences—section 51(2)(a) of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 (CDA 1998)—where an adult defendant is charged with an offence triable only on indictment, the case shall be sent forthwith to the Crown Court for trial

  2. certain either-way offences—serious or complex fraud, certain cases involving children, where there is a related indictable-only offence where the same or another defendant is being sent to the Crown Court (see Either-way offences)

Criminal Procedure Rules 2020 (CrimPR), SI 2020/759, r 9.7 provides the procedure for sending a matter to the Crown Court for trial:

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