No criminal charges can be brought for any offence unless they satisfy the two stage test contained in the Code for Crown Prosecutors: there must be sufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction and a prosecution must be in the public interest.
Where a child is awaiting a National Referral Mechanism (NRM) decision, a prosecutor may at that stage decide not to bring a prosecution if there is other independent evidence of their trafficked status and if the offence is not so serious as to require a prosecution. If there is no other independent evidence of their trafficked status, the prosecutor will await the NRM decision and re-review the evidence in light of the decision. If the case is awaiting hearing at court, an adjournment will be requested until the NRM decision has been made.
Where a child has an NRM decision in their favour, a prosecutor will consider this to be persuasive evidence of their trafficked status and will not bring a prosecution unless there is other strong evidence to the contrary and the offence is so serious as to require prosecution.