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Mr. Denham: There are already serious penalties for threatening someone with an imitation firearm, or for using one to resist arrest or with criminal intent. In view of the considerable legal and practical issues involved the Government are not persuaded that fresh legislative measures are warranted. We will, however, continue to look at what further measures might usefully be taken to tackle misuse.
Mr. Blunkett [holding answer 6 November 2001]: The Metropolitan Police started recording the number of hoax anthrax attacks on 9 October, with the rest of the United Kingdom's police forces following suit on 19 October.
12 Nov 2001 : Column: 556W
Angela Eagle: The Privy Council has made an Order in Council, the Consular Fees (Amendment) Order 2001, which gives authority for an increase in passport fees in the United Kingdom. The increase will take effect on 14 January 2002. The fee for a standard 32 page passport will increase from £28 to £30 and for a 48 page passport from £38 to £40. The fee for amending an existing passport will increase from £17 to £18. The cost of a passport for a child will increase from £14.80 to £16. The additional charge for those making applications in person in the United Kingdom will increase from £12 to £15. The fee for a collective passport, for organised trips for schools and youth groups, will increase from £40 to £42.
Two new services will be introduced for 14 January 2002 at passport office public counters. A one week guaranteed service will cost an additional £15. A same day premium service will cost an additional £30.
|Financial year||Total number of publications issued by CD and RDS|
|1 April 199931 March 2000||443|
|1 April 200031 March 2001||439|
|1 April 2001-to date(11)||373|
(11) 31 October 2001
The publications produced reflect the full range of Home Office responsibilities, including for example, police recruitment and crime prevention materials, research reports, publications issued to victims of crime and advice on fire safety issues.
12 Nov 2001 : Column: 557W
the use of youth offender panels; what steps he has taken to increase participation in the scheme; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Denham: Referral orders and their associated youth offender panels have been piloted in seven areas in England and Wales since summer 2000. They are due to be implemented throughout England and Wales on 1 April 2002. The Government and the Youth Justice Board are supporting youth offending teams' preparations, with finance, training and guidance. From 1 April youth courts will refer all young offenders aged 1017 who plead guilty and are convicted for the first time to a youth offender panel unless the offending is so serious as to warrant custody or the court orders an absolute discharge or makes a hospital order.
Mr. Denham: Under the referral order legislation, the youth court will refer all young offenders aged 1017 who plead guilty and are convicted for the first time to a youth offender panel, unless the offending is so serious as to warrant custody or the court orders an absolute discharge or makes a hospital order.
Mr. Denham: Youth offender panels meet young offenders sentenced to referral orders, their parents or guardians and, where appropriate, victims. They agree contracts with the young offenders, including interventions aimed at preventing re-offending and reparation to individual victims or the wider community. The contracts last between three and 12 months, the term of the referral order as set by the court. Offenders who do not agree to contracts or fail to carry out contracts they have agreed may be referred back to the court and an alternative sentence may be given.
Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many applications for residency on behalf of sponsors of British citizens were granted in 2000; how many such applications were received in 2000; how many such applications have so far been received in 2001; how many have so far been granted; and what is the average length of time between such an application being received by the Home Office and its granting; 
Angela Eagle: The latest published information relates to decisions on applications for indefinite leave to remain on the basis of marriage to a British citizen in 2000. Some 34,840 applications were granted on this basis.
12 Nov 2001 : Column: 558W
Information on the number of applications lodged, average decision time and corresponding data for 2001 is not available. We are also not able to provide information on pending applications for spouse applications and average time between receipt and opening.
Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when his officials received an application on behalf of Mrs. Melissa Gryspeerdt of Chippenham, Wiltshire; when they expect to process it; and if he will make a statement. 
Angela Eagle: On the information provided by the hon. Member, I cannot at present confirm the receipt of any application on behalf of Mrs. Melissa Gryspeerdt. If the hon. Member or his constituent is able to provide more detailed information, including Mrs. Gryspeerdt's maiden name, the date of posting and the recorded delivery details, we will make every effort to trace the application as a matter of priority.
Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on his plans in relation to reforming the law on sex offences and the recommendations of the report, "Setting the boundaries: Reforming the law on sex offences". 
Mr. Keith Bradley: We received more than 700 responses to the consultation paper "Setting the Boundaries: Reforming the law on sex offences". We are currently analysing the responses to each chapter and will be making an announcement of our conclusions as soon as this is completed.
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many cases of computer (a) hacking, (b) fraud and (c) theft his Department recorded in 2000 and 2001; and on how many occasions in 2000 and 2001 computer systems in his Department have been illegally accessed by computer hackers (i) within and (ii) outside his Department. 
Mr. Denham: Official records compiled under the Government scheme for reporting Information Technology (IT) security incidents, the Unified Incident Reporting and Alert Scheme (UNIRAS), show the following figures.
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