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Disclosure Failures in Sexual Offence Cases

At the beginning of this year, the BBC discovered that the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) had dropped over 900 rape and sexual offences cases in 2016-17 (almost double the figure in 2014-15) because of failures in the disclosure process. The revelation followed the publication of two reports in 2017 (the HMCPSI and HMIC joint inspectorate report on disclosure of unused material, and the Mouncher investigation report) that were scathing of how the police and CPS share information with the defence and handle disclosure.

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Concerns over SFO’s New Robot Recruit

In a news release published on 10 April 2018, the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) announced its intention to use artificial intelligence in all new investigations. The organisation said its new AI system, which automates document analysis, will scan millions of documents and be able to detect patterns, remove duplicates, group information by topic and eventually sift for relevance. The new ‘robot’ was trialled in the Rolls-Royce case to detect material that might attract legal professional privilege in around 30 million documents. This was the first criminal case in the UK to make use of AI, and it was hailed a success by the SFO.

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The Right to have Serious Crimes Properly Investigated by Police Upheld by Supreme Court

The Supreme Court recently ruled that the Metropolitan Police breached the rights of two women (known as DSD and NBV) who made allegations of rape against John Worboys by failing to investigate the allegations properly. Two of the women raped by the black cab rapist in 2003 and 2007 had been fighting for justice for four years. When they initially reported the attacks, the police failed to investigate the cases properly, meaning Worboys remained at large – he went on to commit similar offences on over a hundred more women until 2009 when he was eventually arrested and charged.

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The Shifting Landscape of Sexual Offence Convictions

A recent BBC article reported that the number of sexual offences against men and has increased more than threefold in the past decade, with statistics from the Office for National Statistics showing 12,130 offences reported in England and Wales in 2016-17, compared with 3,819 in 2006-07. We are also seeing a record number of women being convicted of sex crimes, with many of the attacks are carried out on children. 142 women were found guilty of sex offences in 2016 – almost double that of 2014’s figures (74 women convicted) and more than triple the number at the start of the decade.

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Fools Rush In: Cyber Fraud Could be Reduced with Effective Risk Strategies

It's certainly not news to us that Cyber Fraud has been increasing rapidly over the last few years, however, it has been confirmed in a recent annual global fraud and risk survey conducted by Kroll's. The report shows a gradual incline since 2012, with 86% of companies worldwide reporting at least one incidence of cybercrime in 2017. This is not surprising given the sheer pace technology is advancing. With organisations racing to embrace innovations for fear of being left behind, both the organisation and individuals are left open to fraud. How businesses plan for fraud will make a difference in the long-term for the security of their business interests as well as their clients' data and assets.

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15 March 2021