The indictment—content, form, defects and amendments
The indictment—content, form, defects and amendments

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

  • The indictment—content, form, defects and amendments
  • Contents of an indictment
  • Counts which may be included in an indictment
  • Specimen counts and multiple offending counts
  • Defective indictments and amending defective indictments
  • Timing of an application to amend an indictment
  • Amending electronically generated indictments
  • The rule against duplicity
  • Joinder or separation of counts in an indictment
  • Charges founded on the same facts
  • More...

For an explanation on what an indictment is, when an indictment is required as well as information on the electronic generation of draft indictments and preferring the an indictment, see Practice Note: The indictment.

Contents of an indictment

The general form of an indictment is set out in rule 10.2 of the Criminal Procedure Rules 2020, SI 2020/759 (CrimPR) and Indictments Act 1915 (IA 1915).

The essential requirements are:

  1. the indictment must be in writing

  2. the indictment must be in one of the prescribed forms unless the Crown Court orders otherwise or the draft indictment is electronically generated in accordance with CrimPR 10.3

  3. the offences alleged must be particularised in separate paragraphs known as 'counts'; if there is more than one count each should be numbered consecutively

  4. each count must allege only one offence although it is possible to include more than one incident of the offence in the same count where the incidents together constitute an alleged course of conduct (multiple offending counts)

  5. each count should be divided into a Statement of Offence and Particulars of Offence

  6. the Statement of Offence should describe the alleged offence in plain, ordinary language and, if it is a statutory offence, the statute and section contravened must be stated

  7. the Particulars of the Offence should give factual information about the charge in sufficient detail for it to be understood what

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