The Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) is Scotland’s prosecution service. We receive reports about crimes from the police and other reporting agencies and then decide what action to take, including whether to prosecute someone. We also look into deaths that need further explanation and investigate allegations of criminal conduct against police officers.

COPFS plays a pivotal part in the justice system, working with others to make Scotland safe from crime, disorder and danger. The public interest is at the heart of all we do as independent prosecutors. We take into account the diverse needs of victims, witnesses, communities and the rights of those accused of crime. We support the Strategy for Justice in Scotland and, in particular, its priorities of:

  • Reducing crime, particularly violent and serious organised crime
  • Tackling hate crime and sectarianism
  • Supporting victims and witnesses
  • Increasing public confidence and reducing fear of crime

Our values are:

  • Being professional
  • Showing respect

Our aim is to meet the Law Officers’ strategic priority of achieving operational effectiveness in all cases.

The main roles and responsibilities of COPFS are to:

  • investigate, prosecute and disrupt crime, including seizing the proceeds of crime
  • establish the cause of sudden, unexplained or suspicious deaths
  • investigate allegations of criminal conduct against police officers.

Our Key Objectives are:

  • to secure the confidence of our diverse communities by improving the delivery of justice through the timely, efficient and effective prosecution of crime;
  • to give priority to the prosecution of serious crime, including drugs trafficking and persistent offenders;
  • to provide services that meet the information needs of victims, witnesses and next-of-kin, in co-operation with other agencies;

to ensure that all deaths reported to the Procurator Fiscal are investigated appropriately and speedily.