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Volume 457: debated on Thursday 8 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the answer of 1 March 2007, Official Report, columns 1501-02W, on burglaries, what initiatives are being taken (a) to encourage greater reporting of distraction burglaries and (b) to increase the number of convictions for these crimes. (125872)

All Home Office publicity materials on bogus callers emphasise the importance of reporting suspicious callers and instances of distraction burglary.

At the local level partners including health and care professionals and voluntary sector bodies encourage the reporting of bogus caller incidents in one to one sessions in the home. Other initiatives used to promote positive doorstep behaviour and encourage reporting include theatre presentations, talks at luncheon clubs and events such as special pensioner screenings at cinemas, reporting facilities located in high street drop-in centres, and ‘nominated neighbour’ schemes.

To enhance the police response to distraction burglary, a national distraction burglary database and intelligence network has been established to facilitate the sharing of intelligence and support joint operations between forces and with other enforcement bodies including Trading Standards. Best practice including increased use of forensics and other technologies is also encouraged through the network.