College of Policing consultation on pre-charge bail draft statutory guidance – Law Society response

We responded to a consultation by the College of Policing on draft statutory guidance for pre-charge bail.

Overall, we consider that the document is clearly written and will provide useful guidance to police officers in carrying out the new pre-charge bail regime.

We consider that the guidance strikes a balance between:

  • the need for police to investigate offences in a timely way
  • using bail conditions (when appropriate) to protect complainants and witnesses, and
  • the right of uncharged suspects to be subject to the least possible restrictions on their liberty

We also give specific feedback on: 

  • the use of terminology such as “victim” and “suspect”
  • the timing of, and criteria for, arrest
  • necessity and proportionality – representations on pre-charge bail and role of the custody officer

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