Police Bail – Changes in the Law

By Clarkes

If you have been arrested by the police in the past you are likely to be aware that the police had powers to impose stringent bail conditions once you were released, pending an investigation into the alleged crime. Many suspects were put on bail with onerous conditions that continued for months on end whilst the police went about the process of gathering evidence.

This will no longer be the case as the government has succumbed to pressure and introduced, as part of the POLICING AND CRIME ACT from 3 April 2017, a limit of 28 days to the time period for which the suspect can remain on bail. If the police wish to seek an extension of up to 3 months this will have to be scrutinised by a police officer at superintendent level or above; applications for further extensions will need to go to court.

The current practice of the police, generally speaking, is to interview suspects and then to release them under investigation and without bail. Clearly, this rebalances the rights of the suspect as their liberty is not curtailed unnecessarily.  However, the current practice is not without its flaws. Whilst the police may release the suspect without bail there appears to be no time limit within which the investigation must be concluded and the suspect may be waiting months for a response from the police as to the outcome of the investigation.

We at Clarkes specialise in criminal defence work and are proactive in ensuring that the police act in an expeditious manner when conducting their investigation, by regularly contacting the investigating officer for an update and scrutinising any reasons given for the delay.

If you get arrested or are invited to the police station for a voluntary interview we at Clarkes can represent you FREE OF CHARGE IRRESPECTIVE OF YOUR INCOME. Our service at the police station is available 24 hours a day seven days a week regardless of any Bank Holidays, on 01952 618787.

For more information, contact Shakeel Ahmed or Jonathan Mason on 01952 618 787.