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Asylum Accommodation Centres

Mr. Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what assessment he has made of the likely availability of staff for the proposed asylum accommodation centre at Throckmorton; [36768]

8 Mar 2002 : Column 596W

Angela Eagle: The Home Office recently launched a procurement competition, under the European Commission Directives, in respect of the proposed

8 Mar 2002 : Column 597W

Accommodation Centres. The information requested cannot be provided as it would prejudice the Home Office's ability to obtain best value for money from the competition as prospective bidders would become aware of our commercial expectations.

Work has been undertaken on behalf of the Home Office to assess economic sustainability in respect of all the sites identified as having the potential for development as an Accommodation Centre. Those assessments will be made available to local authorities as part of the planning process.

Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act

Mr. Kidney: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many persons have been detained under section 23 of the Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001 specifying (a) the duration of each detainee's detention, (b) in how many cases the detention under section 23 has come to an end and (c) the reasons why such detention has come to an end.[38501]

Mr. Blunkett: Nine foreign nationals have so far been detained using powers in Part IV of the Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act. Of those detained one has left the United Kingdom voluntarily; the other eight remain in detention.

Job No: 715993 Folios: 000-000Operator: Operator No 3. Date: 08/03/02

Police Station (Newark)

Patrick Mercer: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has for a new police station in Newark. [39203]

Mr. Denham: Decisions on the provision of police stations are matters for the Police Authority and Chief Officer.

Convention Derogations

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department for how long he expects (a) the derogation from Article 5 of the European Convention on Human Rights and (b) the derogation from Article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to last; and if he will make a statement. [37680]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: For as long as the United Kingdom faces a public emergency threatening the life of the nation, the limited derogation from Article 5 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and Article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) will continue to be necessary.

Prison Service

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 5 February 2002, Official Report, column 877W, on the Prison Service, what the additional cost will be each year of the pay review award; what proportion of the additional cost will be met from maintenance of the prison estate being re-scheduled; if he will list the maintenance projects which will be re-scheduled and the new dates; what proportion of the additional cost will be met from efficiency savings from the wider Home Office budget; if he will list the areas where efficiency savings will be made; and if he will make a statement. [37740]

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Beverley Hughes: The additional cost of the pay review award for the present Spending Review period is:


Although the plan remains to re-schedule some maintenance projects, this has not been worked up in detail yet. Similarly, how best to meet the cost of the award between the Prison Service budget and that of the wider Home Office is still under consideration. Job No: 715993 Folios: 000-000Operator: Operator No 3. Date: 08/03/02

Airguns

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what licensing requirements are in place for air (a) rifles and (b) pistols held in the UK; and how many licences have been awarded each year since 1996; [38253]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The law relating to the use and possession of air guns varies according to the muzzle energy of the gun concerned.

Air guns with muzzle energies below about three quarters of a foot pound are not regarded as firearms because they are not capable of inflicting a potentially lethal injury. These are generally referred to as airsoft or BB guns and do not come under the control of the Firearms Acts excepting where it is an offence to threaten other people with an imitation firearm in such a way as to cause them to believe that unlawful violence might be used against them.

Air rifles with muzzle energies between three quarters of a foot pound and 12 foot pounds and air pistols with muzzle energies between three quarters of a foot pound and six foot pounds are classed as firearms and, although they do not have to be kept on a firearm certificate, do come under the control of the Acts.

It is an offence to make a gift of an air weapon to a person under 14 years of age or to sell one to a person under 17. It is also an offence for a person under 17 to have an uncovered air weapon in a public place or for anyone, of whatever age, to have a loaded air weapon in a public place. Trespass with an air weapon is also an offence whether in a building or on open land, as is having an air weapon with intent to damage property. Having an air weapon with intent to endanger life or to resist arrest both carry a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.

Air rifles with muzzle energies greater than 12 foot pounds fall under the control of section 1 of the Firearms Act 1968 and must be kept on a police issued firearm certificate. No central record is kept of the number of air rifles kept on a firearms certificate. Air pistols with muzzle energies of greater than six foot pounds are prohibited weapons under the terms of section 5(1)(aba) of the Act and may not be possessed

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without the express authority of the Secretary of State for the Home Department. No authorities have been specifically issued for air pistols.

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many incidents involving the use and misuse of an airgun have been recorded each year since 1996. [38244]

Mr. John Denham: General use of air weapons is not recorded. The number of recorded crimes in England and Wales involving air weapons in each year since 1996 is as follows:

YearNumber of recorded crimes involving air weapons
19967,813
19977,506
1998–9918,665
1999–200010,103
2000–0110,227

1 Year ending March. There was a change in counting rules for recorded crime on 1 April 1998, which expanded the offences covered, and placed a greater emphasis on counting crimes in terms of numbers of victims. Numbers of recorded crimes after this date are therefore not directly comparable with previous years.

Job No: 715993 Folios: 000-000Operator: Operator No 3. Date: 08/03/02


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Prison Statistics

Mr. Stinchcombe: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what percentage of prisoners in each prison establishment in England and Wales are from minority ethnic groups. [38101]

Beverley Hughes: The population breakdown for each prison establishment in England and Wales for 31 January 2002 is given in the table.

Prison NameTotal Number of PrisonersWhite %Black %Asian %Chinese and Other %
Acklington76797111
Albany44393511
Altcourse89494411
Ashfield37688912
Ashwell417811154
Askham Grange119781624
Aylesbury345573455
Bedford436751483
Belmarsh857583039
Birmingham849652249
Blakenhurst847791443
Blantyre House117751743
Blundestone417553924
Brinsford439712153
Bristol612851312
Brixton742484128
Brockhill154771715
Buckley Hall135831043
Bullingdon889712054
Bullwood Hall152682408
Camp Hill526633133
Canterbury30483827
Cardiff66894501
Castington24094213
Channings Wood58193511
Chelmsford479791235
Coldingley353543817
Cookham Wood143434809
Dartmoor60490711
Deerbolt42395211
Doncaster1,09189614
Dorchester25794411
Dovegate658712333
Dover178632935
Downview163405317
Drake Hall256861121
Durham71095311
East Sutton Park964936311
Eastwood Park322772002
Elmley930811324
Erlestoke31791820
Everthorpe36489622
Exeter48297200
Featherstone589751546
Feltham6514143411
Ford394751447
Forest Bank91789632
Foston Hall213841312
Frankland63987823
Full Sutton595811224
Garth633831052
Gartree28186661
Glen Parva747821241
Gloucester31892521
Grendon/Spring Hill430811243
Guys Marsh520871021
Haslar14328261927
Hatfield17088273
Haverigg52997211
Hewell Grange181711487
Highdown674652726
Highpoint840662825
Hindley406791453
Hollesley Bay323781633
Holloway4985336110
Holme House96396102
Hull63294321
Huntercombe323583148
Kingston (Portsmouth)179851022
Kirkham44789353
Kirklevington15090271
Lancaster21595221
Lancaster Farms51290460
Latchmere House172582868
Leeds1,27785681
Leicester3617710121
Lewes464861111
Leyhill37989541
Lincoln54995411
Lindholme621741277
Littlehey620811333
Liverpool1,44991612
Long Lartin400741646
Low Newton29196201
Lowdham Grange494711937
Maidstone372761427
Manchester1,231831034
Moorland769831043
Morton Hall1844247110
New Hall369831214
North Sea Camp19691441
Northallerton18392332
Norwich75388713
Nottingham506811432
Onley490761554
Parc88295311
Parkhurst451622936
Pentonville1,1984836510
Portland436642636
Preston56392232
Ranby73787841
Reading24085833
Risley79988921
Rochester645513528
Rye Hill5877016510
Send214464716
Shepton Mallet157861112
Shrewsbury33490442
Stafford621791533
Standford Hill347691876
Stocken566791172
Stoke Heath49289812
Styal449851212
Sudbury49279984
Swaleside749622639
Swansea32097102
Swinfen Hall307721972
The Mount742474048
The Verne5645039110
The Weare387731916
The Wolds40595411
Thorn Cross19279975
Usk/Prescoed32496201
Wakefield558871022
Wandsworth1,3625531211
Wayland626702334
Wealstun60784692
Wellingborough499811324
Werrington11890631
Wetherby33685573
Whatton27194311
Whitemoor418721837
Winchester581821313
Woodhill705791253
Wormwood Scrubs982414469
Wymott79493322
Total Population67,870781534

8 Mar 2002 : Column 603W


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