Crown Court

Crown Court
Crown Court 20130413 018.jpg
Established1 January 1972
JurisdictionEngland and Wales
Authorized byCourts Act 1971
Appeals toCourt of Appeal
(indictable offences)
High Court
(case stated)
Appeals fromMagistrates' courts
Crown Court and County Court in Oxford.

The Crown Court is the court of first instance of England and Wales responsible for hearing all indictable offences, some either way offences and appeals lied to it by the magistrates' courts. It is one of three Senior Courts of England and Wales.[1]

The Crown Court sits in around 92 locations in England and Wales. The administration of the Crown Court is conducted by the Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS).[2] Previously conducted across six circuits (Midland, Northern, North Eastern, South Eastern, Wales & Chester and Western), HMCTS is now divided into seven regions; Midlands, North East, North West, South East, South West, London, and Wales. The Wales region was identified separately, having regard to the devolved legislative powers of the Welsh Government.[3] When the Crown Court sits in the City of London it is known as the Central Criminal Court or "Old Bailey"; this Court locus was established by its own Act of Parliament and serves as the predominant venue for the most serious criminal cases.[4]

The Crown Court carries out four principal types of activity: appeals from decisions of magistrates; sentencing of defendants committed from magistrates’ courts, jury trials, and the sentencing of those who are convicted in the Crown Court, either after trial or on pleading guilty. The average time from receipt by the Crown Court to completion was 177 days by the start of 2016.[5]

  1. ^ Wasik, Martin (2015), Wasik, Martin; Santatzoglou, Sotirios (eds.), "The Crown Court: Unified Structure or Local Justice?", The Management of Change in Criminal Justice: Who Knows Best?, London: Palgrave Macmillan UK, pp. 226–240, doi:10.1057/9781137462497_13, ISBN 978-1-137-46249-7, retrieved 8 July 2022
  2. ^ "About HM Courts & Tribunals Service". HM Courts & Tribunals Service. Retrieved 27 October 2016.
  3. ^ "District Judges". Courts and Tribunals Judiciary. Retrieved 27 October 2016.
  4. ^ The Senior Courts Act 1981, section 8(3)
  5. ^ "Criminal court statistics (quarterly): January to March 2016". National Statistics, Ministry of Justice. 30 June 2016.