§ Mr. Latham
To ask the Attorney-General whether he will make a statement on the implications for the Crown Prosecution Service of the recent collapse of trials relating to alleged hooliganism at football matches.
§ The Attorney-General
Recently, three trials involving allegations of football hooliganism have collapsed. These matters are now the subject of a full investigation and at this stage it would be improper to say anything, beyond what has been said in court, which might prejudice those investigations and pre-empt any decision that might have to be taken when the inquiries are complete.
It is important to make it clear that the matters which came to light in those trials could not have been discovered during the normal course of the CPS review of the evidence submitted by the police. Once the issue of authenticity of documents had been raised, full and detailed examinations for authenticity were carried out and the Crown prosecution service acted promptly and professionally in discharging its duty.
There has been consultation between the police and the CPS at the highest level on these matters and everything possible is being done to minimise the risk of cases collapsing for similar reasons in the future.