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Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Customer Question

I am the victim of stalking and harassment which has been investigated by Surrey Police; the CPS made a decision on the 28th February 2015 not to press charges but despite repeated requests to the investigating officers the reason for the decision together with details of the evidence used to reach the determination was not conveyed to me in accordance with policy guidance.
In order to meet the timelines for a victims request for review I submitted the request after making enquiries as to how this could be facilitated.
I am now in receipt of the CPS determination following the review (dated the 12th March received on the 14th March) which states:
"I have taken the decision no charges can be brought in this case. The evidence submitted does support either a charge under The Malicious Communications Act 1988 and/or S2A of the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 (Stalking) but both of these Statutes impose statutory time limits upon the time in which the suspect can be charged. The time limit imposed is 6 months. The alleged offences occurred in March/April 2014 and the file was not submitted to the CPS for a charging decision until the 3rd December 2014. Therefore by the time that Surrey Police submitted the file for charging, the offences that do pass the evidential test under the Code for Crown Prosecutors cohldn't be charged as they were already out of time"
During the investigation process the perpetrator continued to stalk and harass me, all incidents were reported to Surrey Police however they failed to investigate the further incidents which included direct contact with support organisations such as Paladin and Essex Police responsible for advocacy and safeguarding in an attempt to have my support removed from me and direct contact (after hacking into my emails) with my solicitor who was dealing with a personal injury and loss of earning claim following a car accident and the defendant's solicitor. He made wild allegations in a witness statement whildt he was subject to bail conditions and expressed his intention to attend court as a witness whilst on bail. Surrey Police did not consider this to be indirect contact and did not carry out their responsibility under the guidance to look at each incident individually and collectively to establish if there was a course of conduct.
It is my understanding that if further incidents have occurred following the primary offence, and a course of conduct can be established, that the 6 months statutory time limit does not apply.
Can someone with experience in this area of the law please advise as the violations I have suffered together with the manner in which the investigations have taken place has caused trauma and affected my health and wellbeing and my business.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 years ago.
Alex Watts : Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.
Alex Watts : For now please let me know if you have considered civil proceedings?
JACUSTOMER-yvcedw0o- :

I will seek a non molestation order this week however the concern that I have is with regard tonthe criminal proceedings.

Alex Watts :

But can't you seek an order from Protection from Harassment Act in the County Court, that will be easier as you only have to show on balance and you can bring this yourself?

JACUSTOMER-yvcedw0o- :

This request was marked an urgent and with the caveat that a solicitor with experience in criminal/family law assisted with the question. Are you able to respond to the question posed?

JACUSTOMER-yvcedw0o- :

The question you have asked is not related to the question I required assistance with which is surrounding the charging decision and the time limitations aligned to the Acts that the perpetrator could have been charged with had the police presented the case to the CPS. If course of conduct can be established as a consequence of subsequent acts of harassment it is my understanding that the 6 months time limitation does not apply.

Alex Watts : Yes I can help you but I just wondered if the police won't prusue and sadly you can't make them prosecute, whether you had considered civil action
Alex Watts : Limitation runs from the date of last offence.
Alex Watts : So if the last incident was within 6 months they can still proscute.
Alex Watts : If there is a threat of violence then it is not time barred.
Alex Watts : Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Alex Watts :

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