Deferred Prosecution Agreements (‘DPAs’) were introduced into the UK on 24th February 2014 under the provisions of Schedule 17 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013 (‘the Act’).
Timothy Thompson of Kangs Solicitors comments generally.
Statutory Definition | Kangs Criminal Law & DPA Solicitors
The Act states:
Characteristics of a deferred prosecution agreement
(1) A deferred prosecution agreement (a “DPA”) is an agreement between a designated prosecutor and a person (“P”) whom the prosecutor is considering prosecuting for an offence specified in Part 2 (the “alleged offence”).
(2) Under a DPA—
(a) P agrees to comply with the requirements imposed on P by the agreement;
(b) the prosecutor agrees that, upon approval of the DPA by the court (see paragraph 8, paragraph 2 is to apply in relation to the prosecution of P for the alleged offence.
Key Features of a DPA | Kangs Complex Fraud Defence Solicitors
- A DPA is an agreement between a designated prosecutor and an organisation which could be charged with a criminal offence.
- Once approved by a Judge, proceedings are suspended for a defined period, provided the agreed conditions are fulfilled.
- A DPA is available for fraud, bribery and economic crime generally against organisations.
- A DPA is not available against individuals.
- A DPA enables a corporate body to make full reparation for criminal behaviour in a manner which avoids the effects of a conviction such as destroying the company’s business with the loss of employees’ jobs and outside investment.
- Such reparation is achieved by, for example, paying a financial penalty, compensation and co-operating with future prosecutions of individuals.
- A judge, before approving a DPA, must be satisfied that it is in the interests of justice and that its terms are ‘fair, reasonable and proportionate’.
- DPAs avoid lengthy and costly trials and are transparent public documents.
- Failure of compliance with a DPA may result in the suspension of the prosecution being lifted.
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