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(a) reports to the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Justice and is a member of the Ministry's Corporate Management Board (CMB), fully contributing to the strategic direction of the Ministry and jointly accountable as such for its collective performance;
(b) supports Ministers, the permanent secretary and the Ministry of Justice's CMB by delivering against departmental strategic objective 3-protecting the public and reducing re-offending -and he/she is ultimately accountable to the Secretary of State for the overall performance of the agency and the delivery of its plans, objectives, targets and standards;
(c) as the accounting officer for the agency, he or she is responsible for managing, allocating and accounting for the budget of NOMS agency;
(d) has a key role in influencing other Government Departments to address the needs of offenders, and in providing feedback to sentencing bodies and others about the delivery and outcomes of various sentencing options; and.
(e) has overall leadership responsibility for the strategic direction and performance of the agency.
There is, however, a separate role of chief operating officer, also at DG level, which is responsible for delivery of prison and probation operations to meet MOJ strategic objectives on 'helping to protect the public and reduce re-offending'; specifically:
Development of a coherent regional delivery model to support the efficient and effective management of offenders in custody and community to protect the public and reduce reoffending;
Delivery of an integrated efficient and effective offender management system;
Development of realistic and deliverable reducing reoffending action plans, to achieve a 10 per cent. reduction in re-offending by 2011-12.
The chief operating officer is also responsible for ensuring operational delivery risks and constraints are fully understood and considered in developing the direction of the NOMS agency and in development of criminal justice strategy within MOJ.
Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice with reference to the answer of 20 May 2009, Official Report, column 1438W, on children: abuse, how many people aged 21 years and over with a previous conviction were (a) prosecuted and (b) convicted for offences relating to child abuse in 2008. 
According to information recorded by the police on the Police National Computer (PNC) there were 1,323 offenders aged 21 and over who were convicted in 2008 in England and Wales of offences relating to child abuse; at the time of their conviction 721 of these
had one or more previous convictions for offences of any kind. Equivalent figures for offenders who have been prosecuted are not available.
These figures have been drawn from the police's administrative IT system which, as with any large scale recording system, is subject to possible errors with data entry and processing. The figures are provisional and subject to change as more information is recorded by the police. PNC data have been used here rather than court proceedings data, which are the usual source of published conviction statistics, as the PNC provides information on the criminal history of offenders.
Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice pursuant to the answer of 12 January 2010, Official Report, column 933W, on open prisons, how many prisoners convicted of murder were held in open prison in each of the last five years. 
|Prisoners held in open prisons serving sentences for murder 2005-09|
|(1) Hewell consists of three units; only the open unit has been counted.|
Totals rounded to the nearest five; figures for June each year.
The total number of prisoners convicted of murder and in prison was around 4,900 at the end of June 2009. The figure in the open estate is therefore 5 per cent of. the total. There have been open prisons since 1936 and they are widely accepted as the most effective means of ensuring prisoners are tested in the community before they are released. To release prisoners directly from a closed prison without the resettlement benefits of the open estate would undoubtedly lead to higher levels of post-release reoffending.
Prisoners are assessed objectively in a process looking at all aspects of their offending behaviour, actions they have taken to reduce their likelihood of reoffending and the risk they pose to the public. They are placed in the lowest security category consistent with their assessed risk. Only prisoners placed in the lowest security category
(D) may be allocated to open conditions. If their behaviour becomes a cause for concern, they can be moved back to more secure conditions.
Prisoners convicted of murder serving life sentences and other indeterminate sentence prisoners will be transferred from closed to open prison conditions only following the acceptance of a Parole Board recommendation to the Secretary of State. Before making such a recommendation, the Parole Board must be satisfied that the case meets the criteria set out in the Directions to the Parole Board under section 32(6) of the Criminal Justice Act 1991, of which the risk of abscond is a central factor.
Transfer of any prisoner to open conditions will only take place if continued detention in closed conditions is no longer necessary for the protection of the public. Open conditions allow prisoners to find work, re-establish family ties and reintegrate into the community. All these are essential components for successful resettlement and an important factor in protecting the public.
These figures have been drawn from administrative IT systems which, as with any large scale recording system, are subject to possible errors with data entry and processing. Totals for each prison have been rounded to the nearest five and the grand total to the nearest 10; separately rounded sub-totals may not add to the rounded total.
Peter Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Brentwood and Ongar of 5 January 2010 from the hon. Member representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, whether he has given a direction to the Electoral Commission on which of the UK's electoral regions should receive the additional European Parliament seat provided for under the Treaty of Lisbon. 
Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Chesterfield of 7 January 2010, Official Report, column 546W, on prison accommodation, how many places were not included in the certified normal accommodation of the prison estate in each of the last three years. 
Mr. Straw: This information could be obtained only at disproportionate cost as it would require a manual trawl of the changes to every establishment's certified normal accommodation over the last three years.
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice with reference to the answers of 2 November 2009, Official Report, columns 741W and 742W, on prisoners' release: domestic violence and prisoners' release: reoffenders, whether any offender on end of custody licence has
been (a) charged with and (b) convicted of an offence (i) relating to domestic violence and (ii) of manslaughter since 2 November 2009. 
Mr. Straw: Determinate sentenced prisoners may be released into the community up to 18 days earlier than the halfway point of their sentence under the End of Custody Licence (ECL) Scheme. Indeterminate sentenced prisoners are not eligible for ECL.
The total number of alleged further offences committed by prisoners during their period of ECL as notified to NOMS for period 29 June 2007 to 31 December 2009 is 1,543, as published in the ECL releases and recalls statistical bulletin published on 29 January 2010.
Where the National Offender Management Offender Service (NOMS) is notified of a further charge while an offender is subject to ECL, it is not centrally recorded as to whether the offence was specifically in relation to violence within a domestic setting. Such information would be contained within individual records and could only be collated by manual checking of individual case details and could only be carried out at disproportionate cost.
In addition to data held on offenders who are notified to the National Offender Management Service as having been charged with an offence while subject to ECL, of those offenders who since 2 November 2009 were released on ECL and who were subject to probation supervision, NOMS has received no notification in line with serious further offences procedures that there has been any case where an offender has been charged with manslaughter.
"The number of discharges of foreign national prisoners from completed determinate sentences in 2008 was 9,500. This figure has been rounded to the nearest 100.
Data for 2009 are not yet available.
These figures have been drawn from administrative IT systems which, as with any large scale recording system, are subject to possible errors with data entry and processing."
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what assessment he has made of the relationship between the supply of illicit drugs into prison and the effectiveness of drug treatment in prisons; and what assessment was made of the merits of including demand for illegal drugs in the remit of the Blakey Review. 
Maria Eagle: The National Offender Management Service (NOMS) has a comprehensive drug strategy for prisons. It has three key elements that interlink to reduce drug related offending and address individual need:
reducing supply, through security measures and drug testing programmes;
reducing demand, through targeted interventions for low, moderate and severe drug-misusers; and
establishing effective through-care links to ensure continuity of treatment post-release in order to safeguard the gains made in custody.
The overall success of the strategy is evidenced by the reduction in drug misuse in prisons, as measured by random mandatory drug testing. Since 1996-97 the proportion of prisoners testing positive has declined by 68 per cent. In 2008-09 prisons undertook 5.4 per cent. more random mandatory drug tests than in 1996-97. The reduced availability of drugs in prisons provides a firm foundation on which to deliver drug treatment.
NOMS has in place a comprehensive drug treatment framework, based on the National Treatment Agency's Models of Care, to address the needs of drug misusing prisoners. The interventions available are designed to meet the needs of low, moderate and severe drug misusers-irrespective of age, gender or ethnicity. Since 1996-97 funding for prison drug treatment has increased year on year, and is now over 15 times that of 1997 (total 2009-10 allocation is around £112 million).
On 31 January 2008 the Justice Secretary's paper, "Prison Policy Update", set out the steps being taken to tackle drug misuse in prison. Following this the Justice Secretary and the NOMS Director General commissioned two reviews-David Blakey's review "Disrupting the supply of illicit drugs into prisons" and the Prison Drug Treatment Strategy Review Group led by Lord Patel. The focus of the two reviews was complementary, covering respectively security and treatment issues. Together they addressed the range of issues associated with illegal drugs in prison.
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