How does the Crown prosecutor decide to proceed with a case?

Before proceeding with a case, the Crown prosecutor must be satisfied there is sufficient evidence to conclude there is a reasonable likelihood of conviction.

Even if there is sufficient evidence, the prosecutor must determine whether it is in the public interest to proceed. The public interest will depend on such matters as the seriousness of the offence, the age or health of the accused or effective alternatives to prosecution. The decision must be made recognizing that all persons are to be treated equally.

This is often the most important decision a prosecutor makes. It can have serious consequences for everyone directly involved in a case and for the community.