Review of arrangements to deliver justice in serious sexual offence cases is launched

Date published: 24 April 2018

The Criminal Justice Board has commissioned an independent review of the arrangements to deliver justice in serious sexual offence cases. Sir John Gillen will lead the review supported by an Advisory Panel.

The review, which begins today, is being established to consider the law and procedure covering the development and progression of cases of alleged serious sexual offences, taking account of experience from recent cases in Northern Ireland and developments in neighbouring jurisdictions. 

The review is expected to examine the following issues:

  • disclosure of unused material
  • support for victims and witnesses
  • measures to ensure the anonymity of the complainant
  • the arguments for defendant anonymity
  • the impact of social media on trials
  • reporting restrictions
  • public attendance at trials

It is expected that the review will be completed by January 2019.

View the proposed Terms of Reference, or alternatively contact us via email


Notes to editors: 

  1. The Criminal Justice Board provides oversight of the Criminal Justice System in Northern Ireland.The Board is currently chaired by the Permanent Secretary of the Department of Justice and comprises the Lord Chief Justice, the Chief Constable, the Director of Public Prosecutions, and senior officials from the Department of Justice.
  2. Sir John Gillen recently retired as a Lord Justice of Appeal in Northern Ireland, having previously served as a High Court Judge. In the course of his service as a High Court Judge he was assigned as the Family Judge and Chairman of the Children Order Advisory Committee. In September 2017, he published a major view of the Civil and Family Justice system in Northern Ireland. 
  3. All media enquiries should be directed to the Department of Justice Press Office on 028 9052 6444. Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer via pager number 07623 974383 and your call will be returned.

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