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Suspected Persons (Police Detention)

Volume 983: debated on Thursday 1 May 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how frequently chief constables are required to indicate the number of suspects held incommunicado in their custody (a) for more than four hours and (b) for more than 24 hours, in line with the provisions of Home Office circular 74–78; and if they are required to indicate in these returns the names and locations of those people so held.

Chief officers of police have been asked to send monthly returns to the Home Office on the application of section 62 of the Criminal Law Act 1977, which entitles an arrested person to have intimation of his arrest and of the place where he is being held sent to one person reasonably named by him without delay, or with no more delay than is necessary in the interest of the investigation or prevention of crime or the apprehension of offenders. Guid- ance about the submission of these returns is contained in paragraphs 4.92 and 4.93 of the Home Office consolidated circular to the police on crime and kindred matters, a copy of which is in the Library. The monthly returns comprise information about the total number of arrests in the force area during the period; the total number of cases in which, following a request under section 62, the proviso has been applied and the result has been that the arrested person has been detained at the police station or other place of custody for four hours or more without an attempt being made to convey the intimation; and the total number of such cases in which the corresponding delay has been 24 hours or more. In addition, for each case in which the period of detention without an attempt being made to convey an intimation is four hours or more a case report is completed which contains the name, but not the location, of the arrested person; where the period is 24 hours or more a copy is submitted to the Home Office.