You can’t turn on the news, radio or pick up a paper without being almost immediately presented with the ever-approaching Brexit deadline day. In a recent interview with Andrew Marr, Home Secretary Sajid Javid claimed that Britain would still be a ‘safe country’ in 2019 after Brexit. However, he did state that Britain would no longer have access to crime-preventing initiatives run by the E.U, commenting that “There will be a change in capability”.
These capabilities that Sajid fears losing are: the SIS (Schengen Information System), EAW (European Arrest Warrant) and European Criminal Records Information Exchange System. For an example of just how important these systems are, the U.K made a total of 2,514 arrest requests under these warrants and arrested 1,145 people in the last ten years using these systems. Due to the systems in place, making arrests of European fugitives in England and English Fugitives abroad is, at current, a relatively swift and seamless process by which criminals can be promptly returned to the place of their crimes for trials. However, with the loss of these crucial crime-fighting initiatives the British Police will face many more difficulties in arresting fugitives on both sides of the channel.
Some of the larger police forces, such as the West Midlands, have put plans in place in case they are needed to cover borders, ports and coastline areas in the case of a no-deal Brexit. This would, unsurprisingly, leave them short-staffed elsewhere. In fact the irony of the predicament is that a campaign built on securing our borders will have quite the opposite effect.
Estimates about how great the effect Brexit will have on crime has varied. The Economist has speculated that Brexit could be the most promising rearrangement of the European scene since the fall of communism. John Spencer, President of the European Criminal Law Association, has speculated that “the happy days are here again” for organised criminals. It is important to note that these accounts are of course speculative in nature. However, what we know is that with police forces expected to be increasingly busy fighting border security and struggling with a relinquishment of technology, we may unfortunately have to expect that an already dwindling police force may be spread even thinner.
With a waning budget, increasing responsibilities and uncertain times ahead, the ability of police officers to thoroughly investigate cases in diminishing. Furthermore, such cuts have led to a loss of backroom police staff who deal with the filing and monitoring of cases. It is therefore unsurprising that the right to criminal justice is being infringed upon and neglected as the police struggle to cope with cuts and an ever-increasing demand.
One of the many services that we offer is providing investigation services. Our investigators are highly experienced former senior detectives and chief police officers, with at least 20 years of experience. When a solicitor appoints one of our expert investigators they begin by reviewing every aspect of the case, always endeavouring to ensure that all potential leads have been noted and that no crucial evidence had been neglected. This service gives real weight to a criminal defence case and can undoubtedly prevent the miscarriage of justice that come with an ever-increasing diminishment of The Police’s ability to effectively handle criminal cases.