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Crime: Durham

Volume 457: debated on Tuesday 6 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many instances of (a) offences against the person, (b) sexual offences, (c) robbery, (d) burglary, (e) theft, (f) fraud, (g) drug offences and (h) motoring offences have been recorded in the past 12 months in County Durham; and how many were recorded in 1997. (123654)

The recorded crime figures for (a) offences against the person, (b) sexual offences, (c) robbery, (d) burglary, (e) theft, (f) fraud, (g) drug offences, for the Durham police force area are given in the table for 1997 and 2005-06.

Motoring offences are recorded in a separate collection. The latest available numbers of motoring offences dealt with by official police action within the Durham police force area are for 2004 and are given in the table together with figures for 1997.

Table 1: Recorded crime for Durham police force area 1997 and 2005-061,2

Offence

19973

2005-06

Violence against the person

1,924

9,899

Sexual offences

341

694

Robbery

142

281

Burglary

12,209

6,660

Theft and handling stolen goods

20,624

15,872

Fraud and forgery

1,163

1,229

Drug offences4

404

1,299

1 These figures have been taken from the Supplementary Tables for England and Wales 1997 and HOSB Crime In England and Wales 2005-06.

2 Numbers of recorded crimes will be affected by changes in reporting and recording. On 1 April 1998 an expanded offence coverage and revised set of counting rules came into effect. This was followed by the introduction of the National Crime Recording Standard (NCRS) in April 2002. Due to these changes, figures recorded before and after these dates are not directly comparable.

3 Crime statistics were recorded on a calendar year basis up to 1997 and thereafter on a financial year basis.

4 Up until 1997-98, the only drug offence recorded was ‘Trafficking in controlled drugs’. As from April 1998, drug offences were expanded to included ‘Possession of controlled drugs’ and ‘Other drug offences’. For this reason, figures recorded before and after this date are not directly comparable.

Table 2: Motoring offences for Durham police force area, 1997 and 20041Offence dealt with by:199720042Written warning1,299828Vehicle defect rectification scheme notices4,3653,600Fixed penalty notices21,30812,789Court proceedings11,98019,215 1 These figures have been taken from the annual Home Office publication ‘Offences relating to motor vehicles, England and Wales Supplementary tables 2004 and 1997’—Tables 18,19, 20(a) and 16(a).2 Latest available data.Notes:1. It is known that for some police force areas, the reporting of court proceedings in particular those relating to summary motoring offences, may be less than complete. Work is under way to ensure that the magistrates courts case management system currently being implemented by the Department for Constitutional Affairs reports all motoring offences to the Office for Criminal Justice Reform. This will enable more complete figures to be disseminated.2. Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts and police forces. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used.