A visitor from Macedonia

HMCPSI welcomed a notable visitor from Macedonia on Friday 4 March.  Mr Nikola Prokopenko, who heads up the Criminal and Civil Law Unit, Department of Judiciary and Ministry of Justice in Macedonia visited HMCPSI as part of his 6 week visit to the UK, during which he wanted to gain an overview of the UK legal system.

By the time he visited HMCPSI, he had held meetings with the Ministry of Justice, Home Office, Sentencing Council and other criminal justice agencies, to gather as much information as possible into how the different agencies fit together.  Mr. Prokopenko had a specific interest in HMCPSI as there is not a similar body in existence in Macedonia, and he was keen to find out as much information as possible.

DCI Asker Husain with Mr Nikola Prokopenko

DCI Asker Husain with Mr Nikola Prokopenko

The delegate was met by Chief Inspector (CI) Kevin McGinty, and Deputy Chief Inspector (DCI) Asker Husain.  During the course of the sit-down with the DCI, Mr Prokopenko was able to gain an understanding of the inspectorate and was very impressed with the different types of inspections undertaken and also the methodical and systematic way they are completed.

He was particularly interested to learn how inspections and reports were used by those who can hold the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to account, such as the Law Officers, the Justice Committee, and the media.  In Macedonia, although prosecutors are sometimes subject to scrutiny it is on an ad hoc basis and not in a very structured way.

Deputy Chief Inspector Asker Husain said:

“I was very pleased to meet with Mr Prokopenko and explain the structure of our organisation, and specifically our methodology when inspecting various aspects of the CPS and other prosecuting agencies. 

“Our independence means that we are able to give honest feed-back, make recommendations and provide information for those who hold the CPS and SFO to account”.

 The meeting was a very successful one, leaving Mr Prokopenko with much food for thought. He saw the benefit of having a rigorous inspection regime and said that he would be considering recommending a similar system of scrutiny when he returns to Macedonia.