Coronavirus (COVID-19): Justice Analytical Services data report - August 2021

Monthly data report on how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the justice system in Scotland, including information from Police Scotland, Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service, Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service, and Scottish Prison Service.

First substantive marking

When COPFS receive a report that someone has committed a crime the prosecutor must decide whether and what action to take. This is recorded on the case as a "marking". If a decision cannot be taken immediately, an interim marking may be recorded. When a substantive decision is reached a First Substantive Marking (FSM) is recorded, to indicate how the prosecutor has decided to proceed.

The number of accused given a FSM by COPFS remains below pre-pandemic levels. The number of reports awaiting marking has been increasing in recent months and

now sits above 19-20 average levels. The number of reports with an interim marking has been above 19-20 average levels throughout 2020 and into 2021.

Chart: Marking status of COPFS reports (bars – monthly count April 2020 to August 2021, dashed lines 19-20 average)
Bar chart showing marking status of COPFS reports by month.



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