If you are being charged for a criminal offence, you must give a Cautioned Statement at the time the charges are presented to you.
If you are charged, the investigating officer will warn you by written notice served on you before you make your statement. In the notice, the charge is set out and you will be asked whether you wish to say anything in answer to the charge. The notice also advises you to mention whatever facts you intend to rely on in your defence at the trial. For example, if you did not commit the crime or you were elsewhere when the crime took place, you should say so. If you have a defence, you should always say so in the Cautioned Statement. Your defence may not be believed if you fail to mention it in your Cautioned Statement but instead you choose only to raise it later at trial. If you did not commit the offence, you should make this clear and ensure it is set out in the Cautioned Statement.
The charge must be explained to you. If you do not understand the charge, you should tell the investigating officer. If you need an interpreter to translate the questions for you into a language that you can understand, ask for one. Please note that you have no right to speak to a lawyer before giving or signing the Cautioned Statement.
When you say anything in your defence, the investigating officer must record it or you may write it down yourself. This will be your Cautioned Statement. The officer must read it over to you. If it is what you have told him, you must sign it. If there are any mistakes, you should insist that corrections be made. The investigating officer should ensure that the interpreter remains present during the signing if necessary.
If you have a lawyer, he will advise you on how best to proceed if, after consulting him, you feel that you would like to correct or amend the Cautioned Statement.