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2 Jun 2008 : Column 638W—continued

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many and what proportion of offenders released on bail in each of the last 10 years for which figures are available were (a) originally charged with and (b) subsequently sentenced for offences of violence against the person, sexual offences or robbery. [206498]

Maria Eagle: Data showing the number and proportion of defendants remanded on bail for offences of violence against the person, sexual offences and robbery, in England and Wales for the years 2004 to 2006 can be found in the following table. The data include those held in custody at any stage during proceedings. Bail data broken down by offence group prior to 2004 are not collated centrally. These data are taken from the “Criminal Statistics, England and Wales” publications, 2004-06.

Data held by the Office for Criminal Justice Reform records the offence at the outcome of court proceedings, which may differ from the original charged offence. Bail data are not collated separately for defendants who are sentenced for specific offence groups. The figures given relate to all defendants, whether convicted and sentenced or acquitted.

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Estimated number and proportion of persons remanded on bail for selected offence groups, at magistrates or the Crown court, England and Wales, 2004-06( 1)
Type of offence Total number bailed at all courts( 2,3) (thousand) Percentage of all those bailed for all offences

Violence against the person( 4)










Sexual offences( 4)










Robbery( 4)










All offences










(1) These data are on the principal offence basis. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences, the offence selected is the one for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe.
(2) Includes those also held in custody at some stage and those failing to appear to bail.
(3) Excludes defendants reported as failing to appear to a summons although some of these cases, having been initiated by a summons may have resulted in the defendant being remanded on bail.
(4) The offence is that which the defendant is acquitted or convicted of, which may differ from the original offence the defendant was charged with.
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 and police forces. 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.
Court Proceedings Database

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many defendants granted bail in each of the last 10 years for which figures are available (a) had previous convictions for violence against the person, sexual offences or robbery, (b) had committed previous offences while on bail, (c) had committed offences while on early or temporary release on licence from prison, (d) were convicted but unsentenced offenders and (e) were convicted of offences which passed the custodial threshold but were as yet unsentenced. [206500]

Maria Eagle: Court proceedings data held by my Department do not identify the criminal history of defendants granted bail, or whether persons were on bail at the time of committing an offence.

The court may withhold bail if it is satisfied that there are substantial grounds for believing that, if released on bail, the defendant would abscond, commit an offence, interfere with witnesses or otherwise obstruct the course of justice. In making its decision the court must consider all the circumstances of the case as appear to be relevant. The nature of the alleged offence is only one factor, and the others include the weight of the evidence against the defendant, the defendant's character, antecedents, associations, community ties and past record of complying with bail, as well as any other factors which appear relevant to the court.

British Nationality

Nick Herbert: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice which proposals in Lord Goldsmith's citizenship review report have been accepted by the Government; and if he will make a statement. [206823]

Mr. Straw: Lord Goldsmith's review of citizenship made a significant contribution to the current debate about modernising our constitution and is an important step towards clarifying the legal and social rights and responsibilities that come with British citizenship.

The Government are currently considering proposals in the context of their wider reforms, including proposals set out in the Green Paper ‘The Path to Citizenship’, published on 20 February and forthcoming work on a possible Bill of Rights and Responsibilities and a Statement of Values.

Chelmsford Prison: Drugs

Mr. Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice pursuant to the answer of 20 May 2008, Official Report, column 269, on Chelmsford prison: drugs, what the reasons are for the reduction in the rate of those tested positive for drugs in Chelmsford prison between 2003-04 and 2007-08. [207707]

Mr. Hanson: Prisons have in place a comprehensive drug strategy:

The close integration of measures makes it difficult to identify specific elements that lead to a reduction in drug misuse.

Chelmsford prison has over the past five years achieved a commendable reduction in the level of drug misuse as measured by random mandatory drug testing—down 73 per cent. Chelmsford prison runs a dedicated search team which utilises hand held body scanners plus other searching aids, including a trained and licensed mobile telephone detection dog, which have proved effective detecting drugs and mobile phones. It has received an award from Essex Drug and Alcohol Action Team in 2005-6 for its outstanding work with drug treatment.

Departmental Freedom of Information

Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice whether it is Government policy to release the home addresses of (a) senior and (b) middle-ranking officials in the Prime Minister’s office, if requested under the Freedom of Information Act 2000; and what assessment he has made of the implications for personal security resulting from the release of such data. [207217]

Mr. Straw: Departments deal with requests for information on a case-by-case basis, applying exemptions where it is necessary and appropriate to do so. Any request for officials’ home addresses would be handled in this way.

Departmental Translation Services

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how much was spent by his Department on translation and interpretation services in 2007-08, broken down by language. [205179]

Maria Eagle: Information on how much was spent on translation services and interpreters in different languages is not separately recorded and could be ascertained only at a disproportional cost.

Total costs spent on translation services and interpreters for each part of the Department in 2007-08 are as follows:

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MoJ H Q (including former DCA)





NOMS Centre


House of Lords: Reform

Mark Pritchard: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice when he expects to publish plans for reform of the House of Lords. [207177]

Mr. Straw: The Government expect to publish a White Paper on House of Lords reform before the summer recess.

Judges: Housing

Andrew Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice under what circumstances are judges’ lodgings made available to members of the judiciary; what criteria apply to their allocation; and if he will make a statement. [207574]

Mr. Straw: Judges’ lodgings are available to High Court judges when they are away from the Royal Courts of Justice dealing with business on any of the (six) judicial circuits in England and Wales. The allocation of judicial business is managed by the regional directors office responsible for the circuit in question, in consultation with the relevant senior presiding judge. In addition, lodgings can and are made available to circuit judges and barristers sitting as deputy High Court judges and circuit judges sitting in their own capacity away from their own court(s).

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Andrew Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice which holders of judicial posts are provided with official residences; and if he will make a statement. [207656]

Mr. Straw: No holders of judicial posts are provided with official residences.

Offenders: Electronic Tagging

Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many people in each age cohort were subject to an electronic tagging order in each of the last three years. [206941]

Mr. Straw: The following table shows the number of occasions a curfew with electronic monitoring was ordered by the Courts in England and Wales in each of the last three financial years, broken down by Juveniles (aged 10 to 17) and Adults (aged 18 and over). Data on more specific age ranges is not routinely collected, and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. The table does not include those released from prison on Home Detention Curfew or on licence with curfew condition.

2005-06 2006-07 2007-08

Adult curfews





Community sentence








Juvenile curfews





Community sentence








Total orders




The data is based on monthly statistical returns provided to the Ministry of Justice by the electronic monitoring suppliers Serco and G4S.

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