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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-15600: Elaine Smith (Central Scotland)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 27 March 2018

To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S5W-14543 by James Wolffe QC on 5 March 2018, where the review decision taken by the Senior Crown Counsel on the David Goodwillie and David Robertson case is published.

Answered by: James Wolffe QC 19 April 2018

The Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) does not generally publish reviews of evidence relating to decisions made by Crown Counsel not to prosecute.

Whilst COPFS will provide reasons for discontinuing cases to victims in appropriate circumstances, it is not appropriate to publish the details of a review of the evidence in a case which has been discontinued or in which no proceedings have been taken. Any such review would necessarily contain sensitive information about individuals who would be identifiable even if redaction was used to protect their names. Additionally, the publication of a review of evidence could compromise the ability of COPFS to reconsider a decision not to prosecute in a case where that is still possible, or could restrict the approach taken by COPFS in associated or similar cases.