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15 Feb 2006 : Column 2128W—continued

Human Trafficking Convention

Mr. Bone: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if the Government will sign the European convention on action against trafficking in human beings. [41873]

Paul Goggins: The Government have not yet taken a decision on whether the United Kingdom (UK) will sign the Council of Europe convention on action against trafficking in human beings. Whilst we support the aims of the convention, there are provisions which present some concerns for the UK and which remain under active consideration. We are assessing the level of risk associated with these provisions and looking at how we might implement the convention safely without placing more vulnerable people at risk.

The Government are committed to tackling trafficking in human beings, domestically and internationally, and has in place a multi-faceted strategy on trafficking in human beings. We are determined that the measures we take bring the criminals responsible for this serious organised crime to justice, protect the victims of trafficking and do not undermine our ability to control our borders.

Identity Cards Scheme

Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much has been spent on the identity cards scheme to date. [47572]

Mr. Charles Clarke: Since the beginning of the financial year 2003–04, £32.05 million has been spent by the Identity Cards Programme up to the end of December 2005.

Identity Fraud

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to his Minister's letter to the hon. Member for Birmingham, Selly Oak of 23 June 2005, Home Office reference M12110/5, how the identity card scheme will reduce the opportunity for those facilitating terrorist and organised criminals to operate using multiple identities; and how the scheme will monitor the support activities of terrorist networks. [50426]

Andy Burnham: The Identity Cards Scheme will combat the use of multiple identities in a number of ways. Details provided in applications will be verified through checks on public and private databases to verify the existence of an identity in society and its link to the applicant.

Key supporting documentation will be examined to check for inconsistencies where appropriate and applicants will be interviewed personally to verify their details. Enrolment staff will be subject to security checks and working processes will promote accountability and defeat internal collusion. A fraud investigation unit will supervise enrolment and work with law enforcement agencies to investigate suspicious activities. In addition
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to all of these steps there will be the additional protection of verifying a person's biometrics against previously enrolled identities.

The biometric check at enrolment will conduct a check against previously registered biometrics to help detect a person attempting to enrol multiple identities or steal the identity of someone who has already enrolled. The cumulative effect of all these measures will make significantly more difficult the use of multiple identities by terrorists and their supporters. The increased security of identity will also help to combat money-laundering and other types of fraud which are perpetrated in support of terrorist activities.

In cases of serious crime or threats to national security the scheme will provide, subject to appropriate authorisation procedures, the capability for law enforcement and intelligence and security agencies to be provided with information on when a person's record on the Register has been checked or amended. This will make it harder for identified terrorist suspects to disguise transactions such as renting accommodation, hiring cars or buying mobile phones by using multiple identities.

Internet (Improper Use)

Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to his answer of 12 September 2005, Official Report, column 2567W, on improper use of the internet, what recent assessment his Department has made of (a) the costs and (b) the timescale for development of the IMPACT programme; and if he will make a statement. [32854]

Mr. Charles Clarke: IMPACT is a key contributor to implementing the recommendations of Sir Michael Bichard's Inquiry into issues surrounding the Soham murders. The costs and timescale of the IMPACT Programme are currently being assessed as part of the work to finalise the business case, which will be considered by the Home Office Group Investment Board in March 2006.

New capability is already being delivered incrementally to the police service: the IMPACT Nominal Index was made available in a Child Abuse Investigation Unit in each force in England and Wales on 23 December 2005, enabling users in one force to identify which other forces might hold information on a specified individual in their intelligence, crime, custody, domestic violence, firearms and child protection business areas. This will be rolled out to other Child Abuse Investigation Units and into other business areas over the rest of this year.

Juvenile Offenders

David Davis: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many crimes were committed by juvenile offenders in (a) Haltemprice and Howden, (b) the East Riding of Yorkshire and (c) the Humberside police authority area in each quarter since 2001; how many cautions were issued in relation to such cases; and how many children in the East Riding of Yorkshire (i) were convicted, (ii) were in local authority
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care, (iii) received a reprimand, (iv) received a final warning and (v) were found guilty in each year since 2001. [49102]

Fiona Mactaggart: Data held by the Office for Criminal Justice Reform on the number of juvenile offenders reprimanded, given final warnings, prosecuted, and found guilty of all offences in Humberside police force area, is provided in the following table. Figures are presented for the years 2001–04. It is not possible to separately identify (a) Haltemprice and Howden, and (b) East Riding of Yorkshire as the data is not collected at this level of detail.

Data on children looked after is collected by the DfES. Figures for the East Riding of Yorkshire for the years 2001–04 are available on the DFES website at
Number of juvenile offenders (aged 10 to 17) reprimanded and given final warnings(23), prosecuted(24), and found guilty(25) of all offences in Humberside police force area 2001–04(26)

Reprimand(23)Final Warning(23)Prosecuted(24)Found guilty(26)

(23) Under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 cautions were replaced for juvenileswith reprimands and final warnings.
(24) Prosecuted at magistrates courts.
(25) Found guilty at all courts.
(26) All data given refer to the principal offence only.

Murder Inquiry

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he expects to receive the report from the inquiry team into the murder of John Victor Monkton; and if he will make a statement. [50818]

Fiona Mactaggart: The investigation into the tragic death of John Monckton is being lead by Andrew Bridges, Her Majesty's chief inspector of probation. He will look carefully at what happened in this case, and whether there are wider implications for the release and management of offenders, in particular the case management and risk of Damien Hanson and Elliot White. Mr. Bridges will report back to the Home Secretary with clear recommendations and lessons
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learnt from the case, which will be published on Her Majesty's inspectorate of probation website on 28 February 2006.

National Offender Management Service

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the National Offender Management Service in Wales requires a statutory regional body corporate for the purposes of (a) employing staff and (b) commissioning services. [49029]

Fiona Mactaggart [holding answer 8 February 2006]: The National Offender Management Service in Wales is part of the National Offender Management Service, which is in turn part of the Home Office. As such there would be no necessity to create a separate statutory body for employing staff or commissioning services in Wales.

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how local delivery in the unitary authority area of Wales will be managed under the National Offender Management Service if the current probation boards are abolished. [49030]

Fiona Mactaggart [holding answer 8 February 2006]: In the consultation document Restructuring Probation to Reduce Re-offending", published on 20 October 2005, the Government set out its proposals for the future of the probation service in England and Wales. Further announcements on these proposals will be made in due course. Until the future structure of policing in Wales has been decided, it is not possible to be clear about the implications for the probation service.

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what areas he expects the National Offender Management Service in Wales to prioritise within the diversity portfolio of issues in addition to those relating to the Welsh language and disability. [49041]

Fiona Mactaggart: The Director for the Offender Management Service in Wales is responsible for ensuring that there is full commitment to all aspects of diversity in developing and providing services to offenders.

The core principles surrounding this commitment include: recognising and valuing the uniqueness of each individual; embracing difference" and treating every-one with dignity and respect; providing fair, accessible, inclusive, appropriate and effective provision that demonstrates a fair service to all; ensuring that no service is disproportionate or unwittingly influenced because of ethnicity, gender, class, religion, culture, age, sexuality or disability; meeting all legislative responsibilities under the Sex Discrimination Act 1975, the Welsh Language Act 1993, the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000, the Religion and Beliefs Act 2003, and the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) (Amendment) Regulations 2003.

Joining Together in Wales—an Adult and Young People's Strategy to Reduce Re-offending—forms the basis of a consultation to develop a reducing re-offending action plan for Wales. The outcome of the consultation
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and the subsequent development of the action plan will also help inform the best way to meet diversity issues in Wales.

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps he will take to ensure that the implementation of National Offender Management Service (a) procedures and (b) allocated funding are fit for purpose in Wales. [49053]

Fiona Mactaggart: Full regard is being given to the difference devolution has made to Government. We will continue to work closely with the Welsh Assembly Government and other partners in Wales in developing the National Offender Management Service in Wales to ensure it is fit for purpose.

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps will be taken under the National Offender Management Service to involve (a) local health trusts and (b) housing departments. [49069]

Fiona Mactaggart: The National Assembly for Wales has devolved responsibility for health and housing matters and they are two of the key themes being addressed through Joining Together in Wales: an Adult and Young People's Strategy to Reduce Re-offending.

The strategy was published jointly between the Welsh Assembly Government and the Home Office. It identifies key issues and work needed to address them and forms the basis of a current consultation to develop a reducing re-offending action plan for Wales that involves all the key stakeholders. In England, NHS Primary Care Trusts started to assume responsibility for the commissioning of prison health services in the public prisons in April 2004 and will assume full responsibility in April 2006.

In 2005–06 nearly £176 million has been allocated for prison healthcare. Following on from this transfer of responsibility and funding, a new development programme for extending offender health support is being launched on 8 February. One objective of this programme is to enable the effective co-commissioning of offender health services at all points of the offender's contact with the criminal justice system.

Regional Offender Managers in England are also working to develop links between local and regional criminal justice and housing services, including local authorities. Schemes under development include the Housing and Returning Prisoners protocol in the North East region, the Community Gateway in the South West region and work across the London Accommodation Pathway.

The National Probation service is also a formal partner with local housing authorities in the commissioning of housing support services through the 'Supporting People' programme. The new Civil Society Alliance will be working with local authorities and other partners to improve offenders' access to local services, including through involvement in the new Local Area Agreements.

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department which organisation in Wales will assume the lead role for the National Offender Management Service. [49201]

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Fiona Mactaggart [holding answer 9 January 2006]: The Home Office will continue to develop the National Offender Management Service in Wales in partnership with the Welsh Assembly Government.

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