A private prosecution is a criminal prosecution brought by someone other than the traditional public prosecuting authorities.

A private prosecution will commonly be commenced by an individual, a company, or an organisation who has been a victim of crime and who wants to hold the offender to account through the criminal justice process.

There are already a number of organisations who actively use private prosecution powers and have done for a sometime – for example, the RSPCA, who privately prosecute offences of cruelty against animals.

Whilst private prosecutions might not be that well-known, they are becoming increasingly popular in England and Wales.

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