COPS left an Oxford University student on bail facing rape charges but prosecutors had no chance of securing a conviction, a damning report has revealed.
Oliver Mears, 19, was charged in June 2017 with the rape and sexual assault of woman at a house party in July 2015.
INS News Oliver Mears had the rape charges against him dropped just days before his trial was due to start
His case was dropped just days before the trial was due to begin on 19 January 2018 due to insufficient evidence.
In a Freedom of Information Act request, the Crown Prosecution Service admitted they had not properly handled the entire case.
In a report from February, a senior crown prosecutor wrote: "I fully accept that this case was not properly handled from the beginning and acknowledge the distress and impact that the proceedings and the late decision not to proceed have had on both the defendant and the complainant which cannot be underestimated."
It claims that both Surrey Police and the reviewing lawyer from the CPS were to blame for the case collapse.
INS News Oliver Mears had bright prospects and was studying at Oxford University
The admission comes amidst a string of failings to disclose relevant evidence in rape cases across the country.
All current rape and serious sexual offence cases are now being reviewed by the CPS as a result.
Oliver, from Horley, Surrey, was studying chemistry at St Hugh's College at Oxford University before the investigation.
The letter, dated 14 February this year, was ordered by the trial judge at Guildford Crown Court to explain why the case had collapsed.
Addressed to Judge Jonathan Black, the CPS said they believed the decision to charge Mr Mears was "too early" and that police had "failed" to seize the complainant's digital devices, which contained relevant material which assisted the defence.
Facebook The CPS admitted the case had not been handled properly
The alleged victim also kept a personal diary which it was never seized during the initial police investigation.
Only one page of the diary was originally exhibited for the trial.
Signed off by a 'senior crown prosecutor and head of rape and serious sexual offences and complex casework', the letter said although the rape allegedly occurred in July 2015, it was not referred to the CPS until May 2017.
The letter said: "Surrey Police have accepted that the investigation was protracted and subject to various delays.
"The delay in the investigation was as a result of the rapid rise in complaints being made to the Surrey Police force post Savile."
A 'rape specialist prosecutor' then authorised the decision to charge Mr Mears on 21 June 2017.
The prosecutor said: "Having analysed the case and the material upon which the decision to charge was made, I am of the opinion that this case was charged too early.
"It was apparent from the initial material supplied by Surrey Police that Facebook messaging and other communications over social media had relevance to the case.
"These had been exhibited within the statements of the witnesses and so were clearly available."
The prosecutor who authorised the charges against Mr Mears should also have 'made further enquiries about the extent of the investigation into Facebook messaging' and other social media, states the letter.
Mr Mears' defence team were said to have asked for the full diary of the complainant along with details of her social media exchanges in October 2017.
Surrey Police responded in November but did not seize the full diary until December.
Only one part of the diary, from the period January to September 2017 was provided.
JILTED AT THE ALTAR
CRASH KIDS' DAD DEAD
ON THE CLOCK
'BLOOD WILL FILL GROUND'
'I'M SO EXCITED'