§ Lord Lester of Herne Hill
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Further to the Written Answer by the Lord Chancellor on 2nd December (WA 34), to what they attribute the decline in the proportion of defendants tried in Crown Courts who have been found guilty each year since 1989.
§ The Lord Chancellor (Lord Mackay of Clashfern)
The figures provided by the Chief Executive of the Court Service in the Written Answer on 2nd December have needed some revision and I have asked the Chief Executive to write again with details. The amended figures show that the percentage of defendants convicted following a jury trial was relatively stable for the years 1989 to 1992, fell in 1993 and 1994 but increased again in 1995 and the first part of 1996. There is therefore no consistent pattern from which to draw any firm conclusions. In any event, the conviction rate depends on the verdict of the jury based on the evidence put before them.
Letter to Lord Lester of Herne Hill from the Chief Executive of The Court Service, Mr. M. D. Huebner, dated 17th December 1996.
The Lord Chancellor has asked me to write to you again about the figures which I supplied in reply to your Question about the Crown Court conviction rate since 1989.
The figures which were included in the table as representing the total number of defendants dealt with by a jury included some where the judge had ordered a discharge before the jury was sworn. The revised figures are as follows: