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Sir Michael Spicer: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when she expects to reply to the letter from the hon. Member for West Worcestershire on 1 November transferred from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (MP/Auth Ref: B33561/7). 
Tom Brake: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many vehicles in the Metropolitan Police area were impounded following reference to the motor insurance database in each of the last two years; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Coaker: This information is not collected centrally. I understand from the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis that in 2006 an estimated 10,000 and in 2007 an estimated 13,000 vehicles were seized.
Tom Brake: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many times the Metropolitan Police accessed the motor insurance database in each of the last two years; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Coaker: This information is not collected centrally. I understand from the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis that over the two years 2006 and 2007 the data base has been accessed about 60,000 times.
The purpose of the Migration Impacts Forum (MIF) is to provide a forum for regular and organised dialogue with frontline professionals outside central Government, focused on the wider impacts
associated with migration experienced by local areas. Membership of the MIF includes representatives from local authorities, voluntary and public sectors, the CBI and the TUC.
Meg Hillier: Information held on the NDNAD is available on a police force area basis but not a constituency basis. As at 6 December 2007, there were an estimated 107,208 individuals with a DNA profile on the National DNA Database (NDNAD) taken by Merseyside police. This figure is for people who had a DNA sample taken by Merseyside police, so in addition to residents of Merseyside, it includes people resident in other areas who had a DNA sample taken by that force, and excludes people resident in Merseyside who have had a sample taken by another force.
Mr. Malins: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many judicial recommendations for deportation of convicted criminals were (a) made and (b) carried out in each of the last two years. 
On 20 November the chief executive of the Border and Immigration Agency wrote to the Home Affairs Committee to provide the most recent information available on the deportation of foreign national prisoners. In this letter she advised that, for the calendar year 2007 and up to the first week of November, approximately 3,500 foreign national prisoners were deported or removed. A copy of this letter is available from the Library of the House.
In 2003, a national firearms amnesty resulted in nearly 45,000 firearms and over 1 million rounds of ammunition being handed in. In 2006, a national knives amnesty resulted in nearly 90,000 knives being handed in. Although we have never claimed that amnesties alone will solve the problem, they are one facet in a range of tactics which include tough enforcement, prevention and education work. We are currently exploring the possibility of a hand-in system for weapons which would fall short of an amnesty but still provide a conduit for people to remove weapons from circulation.
The Criminal Justice Act 2003 introduced a mandatory minimum sentence for possession of a prohibited firearm of three years detention for 16 to 17-year-olds and five years imprisonment for people aged 18 and over.
introduced a ban on self-contained gas cartridge guns;
raised the age limit for having an air weapon; and
made it an offence to have an air weapon or an imitation firearm in a public place without a reasonable excuse.
raised the minimum age at which a person can buy a knife from 16 to 18;
doubled the maximum sentence for possession of a knife in a public place without good reason from two to four years;
introduced a new offence of using someone to mind a weaponwhere someone hands their weapon to another person to look after, they will no longer be able to escape prosecution for possession (and where a child is used, this will constitute an aggravating factor in determining sentencing);
banned the sale, manufacture and importation of realistic imitation firearms;
introduced tougher sentences for carrying imitation firearms (increased from a maximum of six months imprisonment to 12 months);
further raised the age limit for having an air weapon (to 18);
required that air weapons only be sold by registered firearms dealers; and
introduced powers for school staff to search pupils for weapons (although schools can still call the police if preferred).
In September 2007, the Tackling Gangs Action Programme (TGAP) was established, to focus targeted action in neighbourhoods of London, Birmingham, Manchester and Liverpool where gun crime and gangs are a particular problem. The Association of Chief Police Officers, Serious Organised Crime Agency and HM Revenue and Customs are fully engaged in this work. On 28 November, an action day focusing on firearms was held in the four TGAP cities, which resulted in 124 arrests.
Mr. Coaker [holding answer 18 December 2007]: Section 43 of the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 amends section 141A of the Criminal Justice Act 1988, making it an offence to sell a knife to a person under the age of 18 yearsup from 16 years. This came into force on 1 October 2007.
Mr. Ruffley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many knives have been recovered in knife amnesty initiatives in (a) England and Wales and (b) each police force area in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Coaker: A national knife amnesty was held from 24 May to 30 June 2006, resulting in the surrender of 89,964 items in England and Wales. A table showing the breakdown of items recovered by force area is as follows.
|Knife amnestytotal items surrendered 24 May-30 June 2006|
|Force||Domestic||Non Dom||Weapons||Of interest||Total|
|(1) Breakdown figures for Norfolk relate to items surrendered in first week only.|
(2) Breakdown figures do not equal final total due to (i).
MPS has supplied a total only figure.
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