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To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how much was spent on entertainment by his Department
in 2007-08; and how much of that sum is accounted for by (a) food, (b) alcohol, (c) staff and (d) accommodation. 
All expenditure on entertainment should be incurred in accordance with published departmental guidance on financial procedures and propriety that are based on the principles of Managing Public Money and the Treasury handbook on Regularity and Propriety.
Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many civil servants working in his Department and its agencies have pensions with a cash equivalent transfer value of over £1 million. 
Maria Eagle: The Ministry of Justice has information in respect of cash equivalent transfer values (CETVs) for civil servants that are Board members only. These are disclosed in the Remuneration Report in the Annual Ministry of Justice Resource Accounts (of which a copy for the financial year 2007-08 can be found in the Library of the House and on the Ministry of Justice website). There are seven Board Members with a cash equivalent transfer value of over £1 million.
The Department does not hold information on CETVs for all its civil servants. This information can be obtained only by writing to the individuals Authorised Pension Administration Centre and obtaining this would involve disproportionate cost.
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many people imprisoned on conviction for a drink-driving offence have been released because the blood taken to assess the blood-alcohol level was taken by a nurse rather than a police officer in each of the last 12 months; and if he will make a statement. 
Maria Eagle: Information is not held centrally on the number of drivers imprisoned for driving etc. after consuming alcohol or taking drugs who elect to challenge the courts decision and the outcome of the challenge.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice on what date the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal notified the Home Department of the decision of the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal in the case of Mrs E.K., wife of Mr S.Z. of Aylesbury and the Entry Clearance Officer, Islamabad (reference OA 52562/2007). 
David Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what assessment he has made (1) of the likely effect of reductions in the budget of Her Majesty's Courts Service (HMCS) on (a) the number of courts, (b) the number of courts staff, (c) the number of consultants, (d) the number of agency staff and (e) the level of service to the public provided by HMCS in each of the years of the forthcoming Comprehensive Spending Review; 
(2) of the effect on the budget of HM Courts Service of (a) recent increases in family court fees, (b) recent reductions in the number of tax prosecutions and (c) the Service's modernising money programme. 
Mr. Straw: It has been clear since the publication of MOJ's CSR07 settlement that the Department and its constituent bodies, including HMCS, would have to reduce previously planned budgets. The efficiency savings plan for MOJ for 2008-09 is underway and HMCS is committed to delivering their contribution to the MOJ savings plan.
We are developing over the next few months the performance and efficiency plan for MOJ and its constituent bodies, including HMCS, to cover 2009-10 and 2010-11. When that plan is agreed for 2009-10 and 2010-11, we will be in a position to inform Parliament of the impact on MOJ, including HMCS.
We expect there to be a reduction in headcount in HMCS parts of MOJ but we expect a large part of that to come from reductions in agency staff and contractors. Exact numbers will be available only once we have completed our planning exercise. We have started discussions with the trade unions on this and will continue to involve them as our plans develop.
HMRC have changed the focus of their enforcement activity and are targeting higher value cases. This has resulted in a reduction in the expected volume of claims from that source. It is not possible to quantify the exact impact this will have on HMCS at this stage.
The Modernising Money Handling project is currently piloting its processes within six court areas. Benefits targeted include reduced headcount for processing payments, economies of scale arising from implementing national supply agreements and further reductions in cash collection costs. The financial impact of these benefits will be measured once the pilots are completed.
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Hemel Hempstead of 23 October 2008, Official Report, column 562W, on matrimonial proceedings: religion,
what comparative research his Department has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the role of Sharia councils in (i) the UK and (ii) other jurisdictions; 
(2) what research his Department has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the role of female Muslim scholars in the process of Islamic religious arbitration, in respect of those tribunals which may act as arbitrators within the meaning of the Arbitration Act 1996; 
(3) pursuant to the answer of 23 October 2008, Official Report, column 562W, on matrimonial proceedings: religion, how many draft consent orders embodying the terms of an agreement reached by the use of a Sharia council have (a) been enforced within the meaning of the Arbitration Act 1996 and (b) been held not to comply with English legal tenets. 
Mr. Straw: In the past year the Ministry of Justice has received a number of requests for information and details of policy relating to Sharia law and Sharia councils and their position on family issues. Earlier this year this Department conducted an initial review of the research into Sharia councils in England and Wales and we intend to commission further research in the form of a scoping study. We hope that the scoping study will assess the feasibility of identifying Sharia councils, their members and users; explore the feasibility of obtaining data to establish the number, scope and clientele of Sharia councils in relation to Sharia family law and determine how Sharia councils, members and users can best be engaged in future research.
Arbitration is not a system of dispute resolution that may be used in family cases. Therefore no draft consent orders embodying the terms of an agreement reached by the use of a Sharia council have been enforced within the meaning of the Arbitration Act 1996 in matrimonial proceedings.
The issue of enforcement of an arbitrated decision only arises in civil disputes. At present there is no mechanism in civil proceedings to record how many draft consent orders embodying the terms of an agreement reached by the use of a Sharia council have been enforced within the meaning of the Arbitration Act 1996 or those that have been held not to comply with English legal tenets. Judges in England and Wales will only know that the consent order they are scrutinising comes from a Sharia council if this is made known to them by the parties.
David Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what his estimate is of the change to the budget of the National Offenders Management Service headquarters under the Ministry of Justice Financial Plan for the Comprehensive Spending Review for 2008-11. 
Mr. Straw: Under the agreement reached in the last comprehensive spending review, the Ministry of Justice is seeking efficiency savings over the next three years as set out in the Departments annual report for 2007-08.
We are currently working up the savings from the budget that can be achieved from the restructure of the National Offender Management Services headquarters
structures (both nationally and regionally). Our aim is to create a lean and focused agency headquarters which will enable offender management to be delivered more effectively and will strengthen and streamline commissioning to improve efficiency and effectiveness. The detail of the final headquarters structure has yet to be determined but will focus on reducing overheads, removing duplication and increasing efficiency in order to prioritise frontline services for offenders both in the community and in custody.
Mr. Straw: A review of Operation Safeguard was commissioned by the National Offender Management Service in February 2008. A further review of the operating procedures laid out in Prison Service Instruction 30/2006 Operation Safeguard was commissioned in September 2008.
Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how inappropriate prisoners as identified by Prison Service Instruction (PSI 30/2006) and Integrated Drug Treatment Systems Continuity of Care guidance have been identified so as to ensure that they are not in police cells overnight since the reactivation of Operation Safeguard in January 2007. 
Mr. Straw: All prisoners are risk assessed before being held in police cells under Operation Safeguard. This risk assessment takes place against the criteria laid out in Prison Service Instruction (PSI 30/2006) Operation Safeguard.
Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many inappropriate prisoners as identified by Prison Service Instruction (PSI 30/2006) and the Integrated Drug Treatment Systems Continuity of Care guidance have been held in police cells overnight since the reactivation of Operation Safeguard in January 2007. 
Every effort is made to avoid the use of police cells for various categories of prisoners and if a prisoner is deemed unsuitable to be held in police cells, they will be returned to an appropriate local prison.
David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many staff in his Department did not achieve an acceptable assessment grade in their annual report in the latest reporting year for which figures are available. 
David T.C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many documents produced by his Department have been submitted to the Plain English Campaign for approval for Crystal Mark status in each year since 2005; and how many documents achieved such status in each year. 
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many documents produced by his Department and its predecessor were submitted to the Plain English Campaign for approval for Crystal Mark status in each year since 2005; and how many documents achieved such status in each year. 
Mr. Wills: The Ministry of Justice does submit documents to the Plain English Campaign for Crystal Mark accreditation and we apply Plain English principles and best practice to all our documents. However the information requested is not held centrally and can be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice pursuant to the answer of 22 July 2008, Official Report, column 1240W, on police custody, how many prisoners have been held in police cells overnight in each month since the reactivation of Operation Safeguard in January 2007; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Straw: It is not possible to ascertain how many individual prisoners were held under Operation Safeguard since it was reactivated in January 2007. The following table covers the period from January 2007 up to the night of 31 October 2008 and gives the aggregate total of the number of prisoner nights in which a police cell was used during each month shown.
|The totals of Safeguard usage broken down by month since January 2007 to 31 October 2008|
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