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16 Apr 2007 : Column 451W—continued

Drugs: Bridgend

Mrs. Moon: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how many people were convicted of drug offences in Bridgend in each of the last five years; [127640]

(2) how many people in Bridgend were prosecuted for drug dealing in the last 12 months; and how many of those prosecutions arose as a result of Operation Crackdown. [127641]

Mr. Coaker: Data on persons found guilty for drug offences under the Misuse of Drugs ACT 1971 at Bridgend courts from 2001 up to and including 2005 are given in the table.

21 people were found guilty under the act for drug dealing offences in Bridgend in 2005. It is not centrally possible to determine which of these were as the result of Operation Crackdown.

Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts, police forces and other agencies. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used.

Persons found guilty of drug offences( 1) , Bridgend courts, 2001 to 2005
Number of persons











(1) These data are on the principal offence basis. They relate to convictions at Bridgend magistrates and youth courts together with those involving the Crown Court that resulted from a committal at Bridgend.

Drugs: Rehabilitation Centres

Mr. Malins: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many beds exist in drug residential rehabilitation centres; how many such places are occupied by convicted offenders; and if he will provide increased funding for such beds. [130344]

Mr. Coaker: Nationally, there are around 120 drug and alcohol residential rehabilitation services in the community with approximately 3,000 bed spaces.

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Offenders can access residential drug treatment as part of a Community Order with a Drug Rehabilitation Requirement (DRR)/Drug Treatment and Testing Order (DTTO) or post-custodial licence, where assessed as suitable on an individual basis by a qualified professional. Figures relating to the number of these beds which are occupied by convicted defendants are not held centrally.

The main source of funding for treatment is the Pooled Treatment Budget for substance misuse (PTB). The national PTB for 2006-07 is £385 million. This is 28 per cent. more than the previous year. The PTB in 2007-08 will be a record £398 million which will be nearly three times greater than the original PTB created in 2001-02 (£142 million). Additionally, in February 2007, the Government allocated £54 million for the development of in-patient and residential rehabilitation substance.

Mr. Malins: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will increase the number of beds in residential drug rehabilitation centres. [130346]

Caroline Flint: I have been asked to reply.

The Department of Health announced the allocation of £54.3 million to support increases in the capacity and improved outcomes for residential and in-patient drug and alcohol services on 23 February 2007.

£16,757,700 is recommended for spend within the residential rehabilitation sector providing an additional 142 units of residential rehabilitation provision plus improved service quality through refurbishments and improved access for disabled users and families.

Drugs: Testing

Mr. Malins: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will introduce (a) mandatory daily drug testing and (b) random drug testing for those defendants subject to a drug rehabilitation requirement under the Criminal Justice Act 2003. [130345]

Mr. Sutcliffe: There is already provision under section 209(1)(b) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 for the drug testing of offenders subject to a drug rehabilitation requirement of a community order or suspended sentence order.

The frequency of testing, which we consider to be cost effective, is prescribed within National Standards: 2005 which require that:

Electronic Tagging

Grant Shapps: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many crimes were committed in each of the last five years by offenders wearing electronic tags; and if he will make a statement. [124142]

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Mr. Sutcliffe: Over 137,000 offenders have been released on the Home Detention Curfew scheme from its inception in January 1999 to the end of February 2007.

The following table sets out the number of offenders, who have been cautioned, convicted or are awaiting prosecution for offences while they were subject to the home detention curfew scheme, as currently notified to the National Offender Management Service. It also gives a breakdown of the number of offences committed.

Number of offenders cautioned, convicted or awaiting prosecution for an offence committed whil e they were subject to the home detention curfew scheme Total number of offences committed, or allegedly committed by the offenders

























Some of those awaiting prosecution will be acquitted or have their charges dropped.

Information on further convictions for offenders subject to other electronic monitoring schemes apart from home detention curfew is not held centrally.

Entry Clearances

Clare Short: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when Yousef Ahmedali HO ref: A1142900, a constituent of the right hon. Member for Birmingham, Ladywood, will receive notice of a decision on his case. [124884]

Mr. Byrne: The immigration and nationality directorate wrote to my hon. Friend on 15 March with the information requested.

Female Genital Mutilation

David T.C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessments he has (a) made and (b) published on the effectiveness of the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 since the Act was passed. [130521]

Mr. Sutcliffe: Anecdotal evidence suggests that the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 has had some deterrent effect, but this is not something that can be measured. There have so far been no prosecutions under the Act but educating communities to abandon the practice is the best way forward to break the cycle of mutilation and the Act is being widely used for that purpose.

Firearms: Crime

Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many gun crimes were committed in each of the last 10 years with (a) legally registered weapons and (b) illegally held weapons. [125072]

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Mr. McNulty: The requested data are not in a form suitable for publication.

Firearms: Licensing

Mr. Clegg: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the Police Firearms Licensing Management System is (a) on time and (b) on budget. [130830]

John Reid: The introduction of the National Firearms Licensing Management System (NFLMS) to all 43 forces in England and Wales was completed ahead of schedule on 26 March 2007.

The PNC link between NFLMS and PNC will be switched on as soon as forces have had an opportunity to complete the necessary data cleansing exercise identified during earlier pilots.

The budget allocated to NFLMS for the financial year ending 31 March 2007 was £2.5 million and included development costs, support to forces for data cleansing and capital recharges.

Expenditure to date (from 1 April 2006 to 30 March 2007) before accruals (invoices not yet received for work already carried out) is approximately £2.3 million.

Fraud: Credit Cards

Mr. Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps he is taking to reduce the risk of credit card fraud. [130893]

Mr. Coaker: The Government are determined to tackle the problem of fraud, whether the victim is a multi-million pound organisation or a single individual and work closely with business and the police to introduce ways of preventing fraud. Recently published figures from APACS (the UK Payments Association) show that losses from plastic card fraud fell by 3 per cent. in 2006 compared with 2005.

A great deal of fraud can be prevented if organisations have proper fraud prevention measures in place and if individuals protect their cards and financial details. Prevention initiatives complement fraud investigation and prosecution. The Home Office therefore supports fraud prevention initiatives being introduced by the finance and retail sectors including Chip and PIN and other technical solutions.

The Home Office provides extra funds to the City of London Police to expand its economic crime department In addition to taking on a lead force role for tackling fraud across London and the South East the force hosts Operation Halo, the National Cheque and Plastic Card intelligence database. Dedicated officers link up with financial service industry and other police forces. This ensures that intelligence is analysed and assessed in quick time, allowing operational action to be taken.

The Government publish fraud prevention advice on the Home Office and Consumer Direct websites and the Home Office maintains two websites to combat fraud. The ‘e-tailing mini site’ forms part of the crime reduction website and provides information to help both consumers and businesses protect themselves when buying and selling over the internet. The fraud mini site which is also part of the crime reduction
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website deals with fraud more generally and provides information for police and crime reduction practitioners, for businesses and for consumers. The Home Office has also published (jointly with the banking industry) a card fraud prevention leaflet that contains useful advice for members of the public. The leaflet was distributed to Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships and Crime Prevention Officers in all police forces in England and Wales, The leaflet is also available on the Home Office website.

Mr. Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many cases of credit card fraud were committed in (a) Hartlepool constituency and (b) Tees Valley sub-region in each of the last 10 years. [130894]

Mr. Coaker: The available information relates to crimes recorded by the police in the Hartlepool Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership (CDRP). At this level, figures for cheque and credit card fraud are available from 2001-02.

The available figures are given in the following table.

Statistics for the Tees Valley sub-region are not available.

Offences of cheque and credit card fraud in Hartlepool CDRP
Number of offences











(1) The National Crime Recording Standard was introduced in April 2002. Figures before and after that date are not directly comparable.

Highly Skilled Migrant Programme: Medicine

Mr. Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Health on international medical graduates who entered the United Kingdom as part of the Highly Skilled Migrants Programme; and if he will make a statement. [126408]

Mr. Byrne: The Home Secretary has regular discussions with the Secretary of State for Health about immigration and other issues.


Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps he is taking to tackle honour killings. [130207]

Mr. Sutcliffe: The Police Standards Unit in the Home Office has been working closely with the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and National Centre for Policing Excellence (NCPE) to raise the awareness of police officers and staff in relation to the identification and investigation of honour related violence, and developed a risk assessment toolkit for domestic violence incidents which includes the presence of factors in relation of honour crimes. Guidance on Investigating Domestic Violence, produced on behalf of ACPO and CENTREX, the national police training provider, in 2004, contains guidance on investigating cases that may
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be committed in the name of honour. In October and November 2006 the Attorney-General and Baroness Scotland jointly hosted two seminars on honour killings with community leaders. The Government will shortly be re-launching the national Honour-Based Violence/Forced Marriage Working Group, to bring together a wide range of statutory agencies, Government Departments and NGOs.

Internationally, the UK and Turkey jointly presented the 2004 UN General Assembly Resolution on Working Towards the Elimination of Crimes Against Women and Girls in the Name of Honour.

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