Statistical Publication - Cases Involving Sexual Offences 2022-23


This Bulletin presents key statistics for the 2022/23 financial year (i.e., 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2023) and includes comparisons with the 2021/22 financial year. It provides a statistical overview of all sexual offences, including an analysis of cases involving rape.

Key findings

During the 2022/23 financial year:

  • The PPS received a total of 1,858 files involving a sexual offence. This was an increase of 23.1% on 2021/22 (1,509). There was an increase of 14.0% in the number of files received involving an offence of rape, from 600 to 684.

  • Files received included a total of 1,936 suspects, 705 of whom were charged or reported for rape (an increase of 13.3% on 2021/22) and 1,231 were in respect of other sexual offences (an increase of 29.4%).

  • 1,981 prosecutorial decisions were issued by the PPS in respect of suspects in cases involving sexual offences. The Test for Prosecution was met in respect of 27.3% of decisions, which included 540 decisions for prosecution or diversion from the courts. At 27.3%, the percentage of decisions meeting the Test represents a decrease from 2021/22 (35.5%).

    Of the 1,441 no prosecution decisions issued during 2022/23, the vast majority (99.4%) did not pass the evidential test. The remaining 0.6% did not pass the public interest test.

  • Median days for the issue of indictable prosecution decisions (prosecution in the Crown Court) in cases involving sexual offences was 272 calendar days (274 days in 2021/22). Median days for summary prosecution decisions (prosecution in the Magistrates’ or Youth Courts) was 36 days (28 in 2021/22).

  • A total of 283 defendants were dealt with in the Crown Court in cases involving sexual offences. The overall conviction rate was 69.3% compared with 72.7% in 2021/22.

  • Ninety-seven defendants were dealt with in the Crown Court for an offence of rape and sixty-three (64.9%) of these were convicted of at least one offence (i.e., any offence). Twenty-seven defendants (27.8%) were convicted of an offence of rape.

  • A total of 208 defendants were dealt with in the Magistrates’ and Youth Courts for a sexual offence during 2022/23. The overall conviction rate was 73.6% compared with 73.2% in 2021/22.