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During the period from 11 December 2007 to 10 March 2008, two non-derogating control orders were made. One of these was quashed following a review hearing. Three control orders were renewed in accordance with section 2(6) of the 2005 Act. One was subsequently revoked after the subject received a prison sentence for
criminal offences unrelated to his control order. Three control orders against individuals who had absconded have expired.
In total, 11 control orders are currently in force, four of which are in respect of British citizens. Three of the individuals live in the Metropolitan police service area; the rest live within other police force areas. All of these control orders are non-derogating.
During this reporting period, 35 modifications of control order obligations were made. 12 requests to modify a control order obligation were refused. A right of appeal exists in sections 10(1) and 10(3) of the 2005 Act against decisions by the Secretary of State to modify an obligation imposed by a non-derogating control order, without consent, and to refuse a request by a controlled person to modify any such obligation. Three such appeals have been lodged in this reporting period. Two modification appeals have been heard and judgment has been given in one of these cases (the judge did not find it necessary to give an explicit ruling on the other appeal). A further modification appeal lodged in the previous reporting period was part heard during this reporting period. Section 10(1) of the 2005 Act also contains a provision to appeal against the renewal of a non-derogating control order. One appeal has been lodged against the renewal of an order in this reporting period and one such appeal has been heard with judgment reserved.
During this reporting period, six judgments relating to control orders were handed down by the High Court and one was handed down by the Court of Appeal. Two of these related to the case of Secretary of State for the Home Department v. Cerie Bullivant, which was heard during this reporting period. The first set out the approach that the court would take to Article 6 in the case. The second judgment related to the substantive review of Cerie Bullivants first and second control orders. The second control order was quashed on the basis that at the time of the review hearing grounds for reasonable suspicion of Cerie Bullivants involvement in terrorism-related activity did not exist. No final judgment was necessary on the first order as it had already expired prior to the hearing.
In the case of Secretary of State for the Home Department v. AE a judgment was handed down which found that, at that stage in the proceedings, Article 6 had been complied with. In the case of the Secretary of State for the Home Department v. AN, the High Court held that the Secretary of State would have to disclose further material to AN or withdraw reliance upon it in order to ensure that the hearing would be compatible with Article 6. In the case of Secretary of State for the Home Department v. AF the High Court ruled that without further disclosure to AF Article 6 has not been complied with, unless AF could have no conceivable answer to the case against him even if further disclosure was made.
The Court of Appeal handed down a judgment in the case of Secretary of State for the Home Department v. AF on procedural matters and a High Court judgment was handed down in the case of Secretary of State for the Home Department v. AM in closed only.
One substantive control order review was completed in the High Court having previously been adjournedjudgment is awaited in this case. Two substantive reviews were adjourned part heard and another was adjourned.
The Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills (Mr. John Denham): Today I am publishing two documents: Innovation Nation, a White Paper on Science and Innovation, and one on implementing The Race to the Top: Lord Sainsburys review of Governments Science and Innovation Policies. Copies will be made available in the Vote office and Printed Paper office.
We want to make Britain the best country in the world in which to run an innovative business or public service. We can do this by investing in people and knowledge, unlocking talent at all levels, by investing in research and in the exploitation of knowledge and by using regulation, public procurement and public services to shape the market for innovative solutions.
This White Paper marks a step change in the way we describe, understand and develop the Governments role in creating the best conditions for innovation. We need to ensure that Britain contributes to the innovative solutions that will be needed if we are to tackle the big challenges of the 21st century, like global warming and sustainable development, and that British business and the British people benefit from the new opportunities and prosperity they create.
In our response to The Race to the Top: Lord Sainsburys review of Governments Science and Innovation Policies, which was published in October 2007, we outline the Governments progress in implementing the recommendations set out in Lord Sainsburys review.
The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice (Mr. David Hanson):
The National Offender Management Service (NOMS) takes the misuse of drugs in prisons very seriously. Since 1996-97, the overall random MDT positive rate has decreased from 24.4 per cent. to
8.8 per cent. in 2006-07. This represents a decrease of 64 per cent. for that period. Ministers are now urgently considering what further measures we need to take over controlling the supply of drugs into prisons. NOMS has been proactive in monitoring changing patterns of misuse and in ensuring that the best available supply reduction measures are in place. By this statement I am announcing that mandatory drug testing (MDT) for buprenorphine will be introduced in all prisons from 1 April.
Buprenorphine (Subutex) is being prescribed increasingly in the community in the treatment of opioid dependence and is gaining equal clinical status to methadone in some areas. This has been accompanied by increased illegal use. Buprenorphine testing has been in place since 1999, restricted to those prisons with an identified problem. Growing operational concern at the potential for wider buprenorphine misuse in prisons led NOMS to commission a survey in 2007 to assess the scale of the problem. The results show that misuse of this drug has grown to be a significant problem and that its use is now more widespread geographically.
Buprenorphine misuse presents a new challenge for prisons. In response, testing will now be introduced in all prisons to act as a deterrent. Prisoners will also be warned of the dangers involved in misusing this drug and reminded of the drug treatment options available in prisons.
The introduction of buprenorphine testing in all prisons will however, inevitably lead to an increase in reported levels of drug misuse. Key performance targets have already been set for 2008-09, but these do not take into account the impact of buprenorphine. Therefore,
this year two sets of performance data will be recorded: the headline measure excluding buprenorphine, and a separate measure including buprenorphine. This will demonstrate clearly the impact of buprenorphine testing and enable the comparison of prison performance to continue on a consistent basis. New targets that take into account buprenorphine misuse will then be set for 2009-10, although we may continue to run two data sets in parallel to provide longer-term comparisons of trends.
Copies of the report A Survey of Buprenorphine Misuse in Prisons: July 2007 have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses, the Vote Office and the Printed Paper Office. Copies are also available on the internet at http://www.justice.gov.uk/news/newsrelease130308a.htm
The Secretary of State for Transport (Ruth Kelly): I am today publishing a consultation document on proposals to reform local bus subsidies. The proposals particularly focus on changes to my Departments bus service operators grant to link it more effectively with our objectives on the environment, accessibility and congestion. They involve changes to help tackle the contribution of buses to climate change and to encourage technological modernisation, such as smartcard infrastructure and use of GPS data, which will help deliver better services for passengers.