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Victims of police misconduct will be able to appeal decisions against prosecution

VICTIMS of police misconduct now have the right to appeal against decisions by the police watchdog not to recommend officers for prosecution following criminal investigations, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said yesterday.

Its new Victims’ Right to Review scheme allows people who have made a complaint to the body to request that the case be re-examined if a decision was made not to refer the allegations to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) for consideration of possible charges.

IOPC director general Michael Lockwood said: “When a victim alleges that a crime was committed by a member of the public, they are given a right to review the decisions taken by the police and the CPS.

“Victims are also given the right to review a decision made when they allege a crime was committed by a police officer if the investigation was carried out by a police force’s professional standards department.

“However, when the IOPC investigates, no right to review currently exists, so by introducing this scheme today, we are ending that disparity for the most serious and sensitive matters involving police officers.”

The scheme has no retroactive effect, so it only applies to cases from today.

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