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19 Jan 2009 : Column 1209W—continued

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Table 2: The number of penalty notices for disorder (PNDs) issued to persons aged 16 to 17 years for offences of being drunk and disorderly in the Greater Manchester police force area and the north west region( 1) , 2004( 2) to 2007( 3) .
Greater Manchester police force area North west region

Persons aged 16 to 17 years













(1) Includes, Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Merseyside police force areas.
(2 )Commencement of the PND scheme.
(3 )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 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.
Office for Criminal Justice Reform—Evidence and Analysis Unit.

Ali Dizaei

Mr. Slaughter: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether Sir Ian Blair was involved in the decision to suspend Commander Ali Dizaei. [247328]

Mr. Coaker: Any questions relating to the suspension of senior officer, other than the chief officer, are a matter for the relevant police authority and the Independent Police Complaints Commission.


Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what legal provisions are in place to prevent (a) the preaching of hatred and (b) incitement to commit criminal acts against the Jewish community in England and Wales; how many persons have been (i) prosecuted and (ii) convicted of offences under such provisions in each of the last two years for which figures are available, broken down by (A) age of offender, (B) sex of offender and (C) police force area of charge; and if she will make a statement. [247788]

Mr. Alan Campbell: The use of threatening words with the intention of stirring up religious hatred constitutes an offence under the Racial and Religious Hatred Act 2006 and would apply in the case of such threats used in respect of the Jewish community.

Section 18 of the Public Order Act 1986 which relates to stirring up hatred on racial grounds would also apply, as Jews are considered to be a racial group. This section states that a person who uses threatening, abusive or insulting words commits an offence if he intends to stir up racial hatred, or having regards to all the circumstances, racial hatred is likely to be stirred up thereby.

In addition, sections 44-46 of the Serious Crime Act 2007 relate to offences of assisting and encouraging crime. These offences can apply in respect of any offence, including those targeted against the Jewish community.

The statistics collected in relation to these offences do not include information which would allow the separate identification of offences committed against the Jewish community and this detailed breakdown is therefore not available.

19 Jan 2009 : Column 1211W


Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have been arrested by police for regulatory offences in each of the last five years. [247095]

Jacqui Smith: The information requested is not available.

The arrests collection held by the Home Office covers arrests for recorded crime (notifiable offences) only, broken down at a main offence group level, covering categories such as violence against the person, burglary, robbery and drug offences. From these centrally reported data we are not able to identify specific offences from within the main offence groups.

Association of Chief Police Officers

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent representations she has received on the corporate status of the Association of Chief Police Officers; and if she will make a statement. [243140]

Mr. Coaker [holding answer 15 December 2008]: The Home Office is not aware of any representations being made on the corporate status of the Association of Chief Police Officers to the Home Office.

Border and Immigration Agency: Finance

Rob Marris: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the (a) income and (b) expenditure of the Border and Immigration Agency was in (i) 2005-06, (ii) 2006-07 and (iii) 2007-08. [245316]

Mr. Woolas: The total costs of the Border and Immigration Agency function (known from 2007-08 onwards as the UK Border Agency) for 2005-06, 2006-07 and 2007-08 are as follows:

Border and Immigration Agency (known as UK Border Agency from 2007-08)

2005-06 2006-07 200-08

(a) Income




(b) Expenditure




British Nationality

Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department with reference to the answer of 30 June 2008, Official Report, columns 712-14W, on the British Nationality (Honorary Citizenship) Bill, if she will deposit a copy of the letter and attachments in the Library; and if she will make a statement. [247974]

Mr. Woolas: A copy of the letter will be placed in the Library.


Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department to which (a) charities and (b) voluntary organisations her Department has provided funding in the last five years; and how much funding was provided to each. [247377]

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Mr. Woolas: The Department’s funding of charities and voluntary organisations can not be provided, without incurring disproportionate cost.


Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much has been spent on (a) departmental Christmas parties and (b) staff entertainment in the last three years. [247097]

Mr. Woolas: No official funds were used for Christmas parties in the last three years: any parties attended are entirely at the cost of the individual member of staff. Expenditure on staff entertainment is tightly controlled, and is only incurred as part of the Home Office policy on staff reward and recognition, and where it is shown that alternative forms of recognition (such as saying thank you, providing vouchers, or a bonus) have been considered. The Department’s accounting system cannot analyse expenditure on reward and recognition by its component parts, without incurring disproportionate cost.

All Home Office expenditure on rewards and recognition, including staff entertainment, conforms to the principles of regularity, propriety and value for money, and any other guidance as applicable contained within Managing Public Money.

For the Department’s agencies, the Criminal Records Bureau and the Identity and Passport Service’s spend could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Community Relations

Mr. Paul Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many staff in her Department work on cohesion related issues; and what forecasts she has made of the cost of employing such staff in (a) 2008-09, (b) 2009-10 and (c) 2010-11. [245580]

Mr. Woolas: Cohesion is a key aspect of the work of many staff in the Home Office; however, there is no central ‘Cohesion Team’, nor is there a central repository for job specifications.

Crime: Airguns

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many crimes involving airguns took place in each year since 1997. [247697]

Mr. Alan Campbell: Firearms are taken to be involved in a crime if they are fired, used as a blunt instrument against a person, or used as a threat.

Available data relate to crimes involving air weapons recorded by the police in England and Wales, from 1997 up to and including 2006-07. These were published in “Homicides, Firearms Offences and Intimate Violence 2006/07” and are given in the following table. Data for 2007-08 are being published on 22 January 2009.

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Crimes reported by the police in which air weapons were reported to have been used( 1) , England and Wales, 1997 to 2006-07
Recorded crime






















(1) By being fired, used as a blunt instrument or used as a threat.
(2) The National Crime Recording Standard was introduced on 1 April 2002. Figures for some crime categories may have been inflated by this.
(3) More explicit guidelines for the classification of weapons introduced on 1 April 2004 may have increased the recording of firearm offences, particularly those committed by imitation weapons.

Crime: Business

Tom Brake: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent discussions her Department has had with organisations representing business on the subject of (a) business crime and (b) recording business crimes separately. [247126]

Mr. Alan Campbell: My officials are in regular contact with organisations representing businesses to discuss business crime issues. I chair the National Retail Crime Steering Group and the round table to reduce robbery of cash and valuables in transit, both of which met recently on 12 November 2008. Key members of these groups include organisations representing business (such as the British Retail Consortium, Federation of Small Businesses, and the Association of Convenience Stores) as well as businesses directly affected by these problems. We also regularly discuss fraud issues with APACS (the UK Payments Association) whose members may bear the financial loss caused by cheque and card fraud. The Home Office is currently piloting an initiative to record commercial burglary separately in police recorded crime statistics.

Emerging findings and lessons will be discussed with members of the National Retail Crime Steering Group later this year.

Crimes of Violence: Betting Shops

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what information she holds on the number of betting shop workers subjected to verbal abuse in (a) England, (b) the North East, (c) Tees Valley district and (d) Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland constituency in the last two years. [247949]

Mr. Alan Campbell: No information is available centrally relating to the number of verbal attacks on betting shop workers.

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Criminal Records Bureau: Standards

Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have been incorrectly designated as having a criminal conviction by the Criminal Records Bureau since the Bureau's inception. [248010]

Meg Hillier: The Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) strives to achieve the highest levels of accuracy. Their quality control procedures show that they have achieved an accuracy rate for 2006-07 of 99.94 per cent and for 2007-08 is 99.98 per cent. No comparative data is available before these dates.

The CRB operates a disputes process where applicants can contest information that has been released on their disclosure. In 2007-08, 3,323,251 disclosures were issued, of which 4,931 were disputed and 2,785 were upheld. This equates to 0.0838 per cent. of all disclosure applications.

A dispute can be upheld for a number of reasons. This can include incorrect recording of the wording of a conviction recorded on PNC; incorrect recording of the disposal of a conviction recorded on PNC; amendments made to the wording of non-conviction information released by the individual police forces; the conviction does not belong to the applicant.

The CRB cannot provide a figure to determine how many individuals had convictions printed on their disclosures which did not belong to them. This is because an applicant may apply for several disclosures that year and the CRB only records the number of disputes raised.

The CRB is committed to ensure that it maintains high levels of accuracy and the aforementioned figures show this.

Departmental Catering

David T.C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department which (a) food and (b) drinks suppliers have been used by her Department in each of the last three years; and how much her Department paid to each such supplier in each of those years. [248376]

Mr. Woolas: My Department inclusive of its agencies does not contract directly for food or drinks supplies but procures catering services through wider Facilities Management or operational service contractors. To obtain this information would incur disproportionate cost.

Departmental Manpower

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many members of her Department are employed in (a) the commercial directorate, (b) general property, (c) the Home Office IT shared services, (d) the Office of the Chief Information Officer and (e) the performance and finance directorate of the Financial and Commercial Group; and how many are employed in the Group in total. [247823]

Mr. Woolas: The following table provides the total number of staff employed by the Finance and Commercial Group and the specific directorates requested in the question.

19 Jan 2009 : Column 1215W
Finance and Commercial Group

Headcount as at 30 November 2008

Total staff in the Finance and Commercial Directorate


Which includes:

(a) Commercial Directorate


(b) Home Office Property General


(c) Home Office IT Shared Services


(d) Office Chief Information Officer


(e) Performance and Finance Directorate


Headcount includes permanent and non-permanent staff (contractors, non-paid contractors and agency) and non-active staff.

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