Mr. Coaker: The number of mounted police in police forces in England and Wales is an operational matter for chief officers, balancing operational needs against the financial cost of maintaining a mounted unit.
Mr. Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if she will consider the merits of changing to 20 years the period of service of award for the Police Long Service Medal. 
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent steps she taken to (a) facilitate policing in rural areas and (b) develop methods of assessing levels of public safety in rural communities. 
Mr. Coaker: Following consultation we continue to pay the £30 million rural policing grant in the current CSR period (2008-09 to 2010-11) as part of special formula grant, rather than including it in general formula grant. This ensures that police authorities in more rural areas continue to benefit fully from the provision.
The Policing Pledge, which sets out for the public the service that they can expect to receive from the police anywhere in the country, includes a 20-minute response time for emergency calls from rural areas. Neighbourhood policing teams in rural areas have also been given specific guidance from the National Policing Improvement Agency in recognition that the policing needs in rural areas may differ from those in towns and cities.
Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 8 December 2008, Official Report, column 39WS, on strategic policing priorities, by what means (a) a police force, (b) its police authority, (c) crime and disorder reduction partnerships, community safety partnerships and other local partners and (d) local people are to be involved in setting local policing priorities for 2009-10. 
Mr. Coaker: Every police authority is required each year to produce a three-year plan including their local priorities for policing their area. They are required to consider and include crime and disorder reduction partnerships/community safety partnerships strategies and the view of the public obtained under section 96 of the Police Act 1996. How each authority decides to gather and include this information is a decision for them.
Underpinning this, localneighbourhoodpolicing priorities are agreed between the neighbourhood policing teams and their local communities. These priorities will be enshrined in the local part of the Policing Pledge and subject to discussion at the monthly public meetings that all teams now hold.
Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department with reference to the answer of 14 October 2008, Official Report, column 1079W, on the proceeds of crime, how much was received by each police force under the asset recovery incentive scheme in the last year for which figures are available. 
|Allocations under the asset recovery incentive scheme for the period 1 April 2004 to 31 March 2008
Mr. Alan Campbell [holding answer 19 January 2009]: The total net value of criminal proceeds recovered in England, Wales and Northern Ireland in the last five years is set out in the following table. From 1 April 2006 the Home Office has paid back 50 per cent. of recovered criminal assets to the police and other front-line agencies under the asset recovery incentive scheme. The scheme is designed to reward past performance and drive up future asset recovery activity. The remaining 50 per cent. contributes to core Home Office expenditure priorities, including policing and other asset recovery measures.
|Proceeds of crime
|Net total recovered
it has been estimated that there could be as many as 80,000 people involved in prostitution in the UK.
Mr. Coaker: Due to security considerations, the costed security plan for the London 2012 Olympics is necessarily a classified document. As such, the Home Office is considering proposals for publishing an unclassified version later in 2009.
Tom Brake: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many Airwave handsets issued to the Serious and Organised Crime Agency have been lost in each year since their introduction; and how many handsets issued to the Agency have been disabled by the service provider through (a) loss, (b) breakage and (c) other reasons in each such year. 
Mr. Alan Campbell: The available information shows that there were 294,282 recorded shoplifting offences in England and Wales in 2006-07 and 290,625 offences recorded in 2007-08, a fall of 1 per cent.
Mr. Maude: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department with reference to the Answer to the hon. Member for Wellingborough of 30 April 2008, Official Report, columns 506-07W, on surveillance: Members, if she will place in the Library a copy of the updated Code of Practice. 
Mr. Coaker: Yes. The Government will shortly be consulting on the proposed amendments to the Code of Practice and will place a copy of the consultation document, when this is published, in the Library. The revised code will then be subject to the affirmative resolution procedure before coming into force.
Mr. Alan Campbell: The available information shows that there were 11,826 recorded offences of handling stolen goods in England and Wales in 2006-07 and 11,227 offences recorded in 2007-08, a fall of 5 per cent.