This July 2023, we are proud to have been part of The Pan-London Rape Scrutiny Panel to formulate an important new plan to transform how adult rapes are prosecuted. The Crown Prosecution Service’s (CPS) national operating model (NOM) aims to drive up the number of cases taken to court and improve victim experiences.


The NOM, which is being launched in England and Wales in tandem with the police, will drive cultural and operational change right across the CPS by setting an improved standardised approach for how adult rape cases are handled.


The NOM includes commitments such as early advice to the police in every rape or serious sexual assault case within 21 days, to help build stronger cases by focusing investigations on a suspect’s behaviour and not on the credibility of victims. To make decisions on third-party material at the outset to ensure any requests for personal data are limited, balancing privacy with the need for a thorough investigation. To consider and overcome any harmful assumptions or misconceptions about rape and how victims or perpetrators behave that may be present in the case and to provide dedicated victim liaison officers so there is a single point of contact for victims to reduce the potential for delayed communication and help improve the experience for victims.

Joint efforts between prosecutors and the police have meant more cases are being referred to the CPS by the police, more suspects are being charged, and decisions are being made more quickly. According to recent data from the CPS, there has been an increase in adult rape charges of 86% since January 2021 and an 83% increase in adult rape referrals where the police have approached the CPS.

Our Advocacy Services Manager, Annette Murphy, a member of the Pan-London Rape Scrutiny and Involvement Panel, said,  “This model will hopefully provide the comfort and reassurance that victim-survivors need and are entitled to when reporting such a heinous crime to the police. Victim-survivors will feel more informed about the criminal justice process and what to expect throughout the investigation. This transparency is essential in helping victim-survivors to understand the CPS’ decision process and shows the commitment of the CPS to better understanding the victim-survivors’ experiences.”


To find out more, see the CPS’ announcement here: CPS rolls out national blueprint as next step to transform prosecution of adult rape cases | The Crown Prosecution Service