Fri, 22 Dec 2017
The origins of Treasury Counsel are steeped in history. As long ago as 1834, there was a plan to appoint full-time public prosecutors at the Central Criminal Court (the Old Bailey) although it was not until 1879 that two counsel had been appointed to prosecute full-time for the Crown. In 1888, the then Attorney General recommended to the Departmental Committee on the legal business of Government that the number of Treasury Counsel be increased. Today, there are usually sixteen Treasury Counsel based at the Central Criminal Court, divided into two groups of eight Senior and eight Junior Treasury Counsel.
Treasury Counsel are appointed by the Attorney General in consultation with the Director of Public Prosecutions. In order to be appointed to the ranks of Treasury Counsel every applicant must undertake a 2 year period of monitoring. ‘Monitorees’, will often appear at the Central Criminal Court in London but are expected to appear at any court in England and Wales. Instructions may include those from the CPS headquarters divisions, from the homicide prosecution team in London and elsewhere as well any other serious and sensitive casework.