To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the number of inquests into deaths in police custody or in prison where the Government Departments were represented; and how long these inquests lasted during the last five years.
[holding answer 5 March 1992]: Between 1 January 1990 and 6 March 1992 there were 175 deaths in prison custody. The Prison Service was represented at 44 of the 131 inquests which have so far been held into these deaths. There is no Home Office representation at inquests into deaths in police custody.Information on the number of inquests between 1988 and 1990 at which the Prison Service was represented could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Information on the duration of inquests is not available.