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22 Mar 2006 : Column 475W—continued


Steve McCabe: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether a link has been established between professional counterfeit operations and other forms of organised crime, with particular reference to terrorism. [50560]

Paul Goggins: Identity fraud and other misrepresentations using counterfeit documents (or fraudulently obtained ones) are employed both by organised criminals and terrorists. Some terrorist and criminal groups have the capability to produce such documents for themselves while others will look to third parties.
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Mr. Ellwood: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what progress has been made with the consultation on helping British victims of terrorism and other acts of violence abroad; and when he expects to make an announcement. [59579]

Mr. Charles Clarke: The consultation period for the Green Paper Rebuilding Lives: supporting victims of crime" ended on 1 March 2006.

The Government are looking at the scope for a national charitable fund to provide some immediate help for those caught up in terrorist attacks wherever they take place. It is also looking at ways of raising public awareness of insurance while travelling abroad. An announcement will be made in due course.

Under-age Drinking

Mr. Davey: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what measures his Department has taken to ensure that off-licences and supermarkets do not sell alcohol to under-age drinkers. [53009]

Paul Goggins: We are working closely with the industry, including retailers to tackle sales of alcohol to under-age drinkers. As a result, the industry, supported by many of the major bodies, recently launched its Social Responsibility Standards for the Production and Sale of Alcoholic Drinks in the UK, emphasising the importance of preventing under-age purchases. The Government are working with the national supermarkets, which have pledged to eliminate under-age sales by the end of this year. It also supports specific measures and initiatives including: 'PASS' (Proof of Age Standards Scheme) age verification cards; schemes that reward good licensed premises management, including 'Best Bar None'; and the 'Challenge 21' approach now commonplace in supermarkets.

The Government also support rigorous law enforcement and has introduced a range of powers for dealing with under-age sales ranging from fixed penalty notices to the review of premises licenses.

Mr. Wills: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how many summonses were issued in Swindon for selling alcohol to minors as a result of test purchase operations and visits between 12 November 2004 and 24 December 2005; [59014]

(2) how many test purchase operations to target underage sales of alcohol were carried out by police and trading standards officers in Swindon between 12 November 2004 and 24 December 2005. [58764]

Hazel Blears: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave him on 14 March 2006, Official Report, column 2123W.

Wildlife Crime

Martin Horwood: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the resources available to police officers for tackling wildlife crime; and if he will make a statement. [59544]

Hazel Blears: It is for individual Chief Constables and Police Authorities to make any appropriate assessment regarding the availability of resources to Police officers for tackling wildlife crime.
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Unlawful Telephone Tapping

Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the incidence of unlawful telephone tapping in (a) public sector and (b) private sector organisations; and if he will make a statement. [58892]

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Hazel Blears: Under section one of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000, it is a criminal offence for a person intentionally and without lawful authority to intercept any communication in the course of its transmission. Available details on prosecutions for unlawful interception are set out in the following table.
Number of defendants prosecuted at magistrates court, found guilty and sentenced at all courts for unlawful interception of postal, public or private telecommunications scheme, in England and Wales, 2000 to 2004(25)

ProsecutedNot guiltyFound guiltyConditional dischargeFineCommunity sentence

(25) These data are on the principal offence basis.
RDS—Office for Criminal Justice Reform
Ref IOS 089–06