DPP concerned about 'stretched' resources
on 24/10/2012 12:42:49
In the 2011 annual DPP report, published this morning, Claire Loftus said that the office of the DPP has largely managed to maintain the same overall rate of throughput as achieved in 2009 and 2010.
However, she said that she is concerned that it will not be possible to sustain that rate in the coming years.
The DPP said a major challenge for the office is to ensure the prosecution of serious crime is not compromised and that available resources are allocated as effectively as possible.
"The office continues, like all State agencies, to operate in difficult economic circumstances," she said.
"This has had a significant impact on our resources. The office of the DPP differs from most Government Offices and Departments in that it has just one core function, the prosecution of crime. It does not have discretionary programmes which it can decide to discontinue.
"The office has made clear previously that our resources are fully stretched, having regard to the increasingly large and complex files which we are required to consider and subsequently present in court when a decision is made to prosecute.
"As the statistics show, we have largely managed to maintain the same overall rate of throughput as achieved in 2010 and 2009. I am increasingly concerned however that it will not be possible to sustain this in the coming years.
"The expenditure of the office is essentially demand led as we do not have control over the level of crime or the number of prosecutions we must bring."