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Mr. Denham [holding answer 4 July 2002]: Airwave, which uses terrestrial trunked radio system (Tetra) technology, will enhance officer safety by providing the police with a modern and reliable communication system. Concerns have been expressed, in general, about the safe use of mobile phones and, in particular, about pulsed signals. Current evidence suggests that it is unlikely that the unique features of Tetra pose a hazard to health. However, a precautionary approach is being taken and the Home Office, advised by independent experts, is commissioning further scientific studies.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what his estimate is of the total amount of money seized from drug barons and put back into anti-drug programmes in each year since 1996; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth [holding answer 4 July 2002]: The receipts remitted to the Secretary of State from confiscation orders made under the Drug Trafficking Acts 1986 and 1994, for each year from 1996 were:
£9,458,000 for 199798;
£10,476,000 for 199899;
£9,333,000 for 19992000; and
£11,757,000 for 200001.
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The amounts disbursed in each year were £3 million in 19992000, £5 million in 200001 and £4 million in 200102.
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The United Kingdom has received three extradition requests since 7 June 2002. In addition, requests are awaited for six fugitives who have been provisionally arrested since that date.
Mr. Hendry: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what approaches he has received from Sabre Developments Ltd. regarding the potential use of Mayfield college, Mayfield, East Sussex, as an asylum accommodation centre. 
Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what recent representations he has received on banning the private ownership of air weapons; and if he will make a statement; 
(3) what steps he is taking to control the advertising of air weapons; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth [holding answer 8 July 2002]: We have recently received a number of representations about the private ownership of air weapons, both for and against banning them or changing the age limits for unsupervised use.
The Government totally condemn the irresponsible use of air weapons and are presently reviewing the overall effectiveness of the current range of controls, including those regulating the age at which air weapons can be used without supervision and the way in which they are sold.
An absolute ban on the ownership of air weapons was considered by the Home Affairs Committee in their second report on controls over firearms. They concluded that such a ban would not be appropriate, but did recommend that the existing laws relating to air weapons be rigorously enforced and that this should be coupled with a programme of education on their safe and
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responsible use. We accepted that recommendation and are currently considering advice from the Firearms Consultative Committee on how best to take this forward.
There are no statutory restrictions at present on the advertising of air weapons. Generally, advertising in the non-broadcast media is subject to self-regulation under the advertising industry's British Codes of Advertising and Sales Promotion, compliance with which is overseen by the Advertising Standards Authority. The authority will investigate all complaints of non-compliance with the codes, including any about advertisements which appear to condone or are likely to provoke violence or anti- social behaviour.
Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many prosecutions for selling an air weapon to a person under the age of 18 (a) were commenced and (b) resulted in a conviction in each of the past five years. 
|Offence description/Statute||Persons proceeded against||Persons found guilty|
|Selling or letting on hire an air weapon or ammunition to a person under 17: Firearms Act 1968, Sec 24(1)|
(54) These data are on the principal offence basis.
(55) Staffordshire police were only able to submit sample data for persons proceeded against and convicted in the magistrates courts for the year 2000. Although sufficient to estimate higher orders of data, these data are not robust enough at a detailed level and have been excluded from this table.
Mr. Kaufman: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) when he intends to reply to the letter to him dated 22 May from the right hon. Member for Manchester, Gorton with regard to Mr. B. Benbaziz; 
(3) when he intends to reply to the letter to him dated 22 May from the right hon. Member for Manchester, Gorton with regard to Mrs. Um-Kalthovma; 
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(5) when he intends to reply to the letter to him dated 22 May from the right hon. Member for Manchester, Gorton with regard to Sirwan Abdulrehman. 
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he received the letters of 23 January and 23 March from the solicitors to Mr. D M of Aylesbury (ref. M1002217); when he intends to reply; and if he will make a statement. 
Beverley Hughes [holding answer 9 July 2002]: The letter of 23 January was received by the Immigration and Nationality Directorate (IND) on 25 January 2002 and a reply was sent on 2 May 2002. There is no trace of IND receiving a letter dated 23 March 2002, although a letter dated 25 March 2002 with copies of an application and other documents was received on 27 March 2002. Unfortunately, these documents were not linked to the file until after the reply was sent.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if his Department has received the recorded delivery letter RB 6205 2931 OGB, dated 1 May, from Mrs. O P of Aylesbury (ref. P404417) concerning her asylum application; when he expects to reply; and if he will make a statement. 
Beverley Hughes [holding answer 9 July 2002]: This letter has been received but regrettably has since been misplaced within the Immigration and Nationality Directorate (IND). Officials are contacting Mrs. O P to clarify her inquiry and will then reply to her as soon as possible.
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