Give More Power to The Police To Increase Efficiency

The police will now be enabled with more powers, as they will be entitled to prosecute people on an extended list of offences without being necessary a state lawyer to be involved, said the Home Secretary Theresa May.

It has been announced that a greater number of offences will be taken to court by the police, without involving the Crown Prosecution Service, as this is considered to ” help the focus on fighting crime”

Currently, the police might take only minor cases to court. This involve traffic offences, such as speeding, driving without insurance or failing to provide a valid driving license. According to the new plans, they will be able to deal with those accused of driving without due care and attention, a variety of alcohol-related and public order crimes, and cases involving criminal damage with a value of less than £5,000.

All the cases, handled by the police, will go ahead only if the defendant has announced their intention to plead guilty. It has been estimated that this way, more than 90 000 offences could be prosecuted by the police alone annually. These measures are taken in order to increase the efficiency of their work.

This would mean that more than 50% of cases dealt with in Magistrates’ Courts would be handled by the police. Nine police forces are to run an initial test of the new powers, which will be rolled out if they are viewed as a success.

“Giving police more powers to prosecute offenders will slash unnecessary bureaucracy and deliver swifter justice for victims,” said  May on the changes. “I want us to be bold and imaginative about transforming policing and the wider criminal justice system to save time and money and deliver a better service for the public.

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Chinese Visa Changes – Not Going to Happen

China citizens are able to obtain a single visa for the European Union, so they can visit any of the 25 Schengen nations, however in order to visit the United Kingdom they need a separate one. The culture secretary Jeremy Hunt proposed measures on how to make it easier for Chinese tourists to visit Britain, especially for the Olympic Games, as it has been calculated that a Chinese visitor will spend about £1,700 on average in the UK, which will have a positive effect on the UK`s economy. However the Home Secretary Theresa May has some security concerns and for this reason she is reluctant to make additional moves on making it easier for Chinese tourists to obtain a UK visa.

This was made clear by a leaked letter sent by May`s secretary to Downing Street, which reveals that the Home Secretary has rejected the proposals to extend the EU visas to the UK. In the letter Katharine Hammond says: “The proposal… is not acceptable to the Home Secretary for national security reasons. At Cabinet the issue of asylum claims was discussed. We also face significant challenges with Foreign National Offenders and organised crime including drugs, money laundering, fraud, criminal finances, intellectual property, immigration and cyber crime.”

It has been also pointed out that there are 400 Chinese criminals to be deported and over 1000 asylum seeking applications from Chinese citizens. Many people blame the complexity of visa obtaining to be the reason for the low level of Chinese tourists. Last year only 142,000 Chinese citizens have visited Britain, compared to over 1,2 million, who visited France. May denied these accusations and put the blame on VisitBritain for not taking enough marketing measures to promote Britain as an attractive tourist destination.

The Home Office argues that the visa process is “insignificant compared to the price and availability of hotels” and says “the cost of the visa is not a barrier”