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Asylum Seekers

Mr. Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what has been the number of children under the age of 16 years who have entered the UK as asylum

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seekers (a) with parents and (b) on their own in each of the last three years. [145761]

Mrs. Roche: The number of children under the age of 18 who have entered the United Kingdom as asylum

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seekers on their own is estimated at 1,105 in 1997, 3,040 in 1998 and 3,350 in 1999. Information for 2000 is not yet available.

Reliable information on the number of children who have entered the United Kingdom as asylum seekers with their parents is not readily available and could only be obtained by examination of individual case records and is, therefore, available only at disproportionate cost.

Police Armed Response Units

Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what powers he has to prevent members of police armed response units being identified in legal proceedings. [145358]

Mr. Charles Clarke: There are no such powers for the Secretary of State. In any legal proceedings it would be for the court to consider whether any person should be granted anonymity. In an inquest that would be a matter for the Coroner.

Supervised Youth Facilities

Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what his assessment is of the availability of supervised youth facilities as an anti-crime and disorder measure; what has been the trend in the availability of such facilities over the past decade; and if he will make a statement. [145357]

Mr. Charles Clarke: Supervised youth facilities vary considerably, from youth clubs funded by the local authority through to schemes supported by volunteers in response to an identified local need. Information about the availability of such facilities is not collected centrally. It is accordingly not possible to offer a comprehensive assessment of trends in availability over time.

We know that provision of good facilities for young people can reduce crime and disorder. This is why the Government launched the youth inclusion programme in September 1999, targeting in particular disaffected young people and those at the greatest risk of offending in the 13 to 16 age group. We expect to have 68 youth inclusion projects up and running by March, which will provide a dynamic package of activities for young people. The programme objectives are to reduce arrest rates in the target group by 60 per cent. reduce recorded crime in the programme areas by 30 per cent. and achieve reduction of at least one third in truancy and school exclusions among the target group by 2002.

Closed Circuit Television (Gedling)

Mr. Coaker: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the bid by Gedling crime prevention partnership for the latest round of CCTV funding; and when he will make an announcement. [145532]

Mr. Charles Clarke: All outline bids submitted by local crime and disorder reduction partnerships under the latest round of the Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) initiative, including those from the Gedling crime prevention partnership, are currently under consideration. Partnerships will be notified as soon as possible if their bids have been selected to proceed to the final application stage.

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Drug Misuse (Prisons)

Mr. Peter Bottomley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the implications of the Court of Appeal's decision on Wyner and Brock on (a) Ministers', (b) his Department's officials' and (c) prison governors' responsibility for policy and management of prisons. [145448]

Mr. Charles Clarke: Ruth Wyner and John Brock, managers of the Wintercomfort day centre for the homeless in Cambridge, were convicted under section 8 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 because they were judged to have failed to take reasonable steps to prevent drug dealing on the premises for which they were responsible. The Court of Appeal upheld the convictions. The Court of Appeal's decision confirms our understanding that section 8 applies to the owner or manager of any premises and has no new implications for Ministers or Home Office officials.

In relation to prison governors, the Government recognise that drug misuse and the supply of drugs is a problem in some prisons. A comprehensive range of measures has been implemented to tackle the supply of drugs in prisons and prison governors operate an effective strategy for preventing, as far as possible, the supply of drugs in prison establishments. I refer the hon. Member to the debate on this subject that he introduced on 29 February 2000, Official Report, columns 17-24WH.

Crime (Wales)

Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps he proposes to take to improve co-operation between his Department, the National Assembly for Wales and local authorities in Wales in tackling crime in Wales. [146018]

Mr. Charles Clarke: I appointed 10 crime reduction directors last year, one of whom is based in the National Assembly for Wales. Their role is to build strong relationships with local crime and disorder reduction partnerships--of which there are 22 in Wales--helping the police, local authorities, probation service, health authorities and the voluntary and community sectors increase their joint effectiveness through guidance, training, best practice and monitoring crime reduction performance.

Within Wales the crime reduction director also reports to the Assembly Minister for Local Government and through the Assembly Minister advises the Assembly's Local Government Committee; as well as having strong links with all parts of the Assembly civil service.

Crime reduction directors now contribute to the development of Home Office crime reduction policies to ensure that the most effective local outcomes can be designed in from the start.

Metropolitan Police

Miss Widdecombe: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many constables in the Metropolitan police force there were at the end of September 2000; and if he will make a statement. [145947]

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Mr. Charles Clarke: At the end of September 2000 there were 18,981 full-time equivalent constables in the Metropolitan police service. This accounts for 71 per cent. of the total strength of the force.

With funding from the crime fighting fund (CFF)--£454 million over the three years 2000-01 to 2002-03--forces will be able to recruit 9,000 police officers over and above the number they had otherwise planned to recruit in that period. 2,044 of the 9,000 have been allocated to the Metropolitan police--663 this year, 699 in 2001-02 and 682 in 2002-03. All of these will enter the police service in the rank of constable.

Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department in which (a) directorate and (b) sub- division of the Metropolitan police the police officer whose liaison with a member of the jury caused the abandonment of a recent High Court trial serves; and if he will make a statement. [145536]

Mr. Charles Clarke: The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis informs me that the officer is a Metropolitan police uniform constable in (a) the borough of Redbridge at (b) Ilford Police Station.

Metropolitan Police (Keith Green)

Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department which papers have been lost in respect of the complaint made by Keith Green to the Police Complaints Authority; to which agency the loss is attributable; when the loss was discovered; and if he will make a statement. [145537]

Mr. Charles Clarke: The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis informs me that the paper which has been lost is an internal copy of the final report of the investigation by the Metropolitan police service (MPS), which was submitted to the Police Complaints Authority and the Crown Prosecution Service and the loss was identified in the latter part of 2000. The information contained within the file is readily available from other sources within the MPS and a duplicate file has been made.

Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department on what basis, and for what amount, the Metropolitan police has made an out of court settlement to Keith Green. [145541]

Mr. Charles Clarke: The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis has advised me that the judge ordered that there would be a confidentiality order on this settlement and that any disclosure of information would constitute contempt of court.

Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department for what reason Keith Green has been refused a copy of the notebook belonging to Superintendent Jarrett. [145539]

Mr. Charles Clarke: The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis has informed me that they are unsure as to which particular notebook entry this question refers to. If it is the notebook containing an entry that relates to an incident which later became subject of a court case, the pocket book would have been copied and given to the defence team dealing with this case. If it is an entry that

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relates to an internal matter only, the pocket book would not be available unless the pocket book subsequently became the subject of a disciplinary matter.

Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will appoint an officer from a force outside the Metropolitan Police to conduct an investigation into the complaints made by Keith Green; and if he will make a statement. [145538]

Mr. Charles Clarke: The Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis informs me that the complaints made by Keith Green are currently being investigated by the directorate of professional standards of the Metropolitan police service. At this stage, he considers that it is unnecessary for an outside force to be appointed to conduct the investigation.


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