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Volume 465: debated on Thursday 25 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many crimes are known to have been committed by offenders while on licence from prison in (a) 2002 and (b) 2006. (160560)

We have data on the proven re-offending of offenders who were released on licence, but some of the re-offending of these offenders may have been committed after their licence period ended.

The available information on number of offences committed over three months by those offenders who were on licence when the snapshot of the probation caseload was taken is given in the following table. Information relating to 2002 is not available and could be produced only at disproportionate cost.

Proven re-offending of those released on licence who were recorded as being on the probation caseload (England and Wales) at the end of March, June, September, December 200

Date of data extract

Total number of offenders on post-release supervision on probation caseload1

Period of re-offence

Number of re-offences2

Number of re-offenders

End March 2006


April to June 2006



End June 2006


July to September 2006



End September 2006


October to December 2006



End December 2006


January to March 2007



1 Based on data matched with the PNC

2 A re-offence is defined as an offence leading to a caution or conviction which took place in the three months following the end of that quarter and was proven within six months of the end of that quarter. For example, for March 2006, re-offences which took place in April, May or June 2006 will be included as long as they were proven by the end September 2006.


These figures have been drawn from administrative IT systems, which, as with any large scale recording system, are subject to possible errors with data entry and processing.

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the re-offending rate was for prisoners who had served custodial sentences in the latest period for which figures are available; and what plans are in place to reduce it. (160643)

The latest available data for adult offenders discharged from custody in the first quarter of 2004 show a 64.7 per cent. re-offending rate. The latest available data for juvenile offenders discharged from custody in the first quarter of 2005 show a 76.2 per cent. rate of re-offending.

The adult results show a 4.6 per cent. reduction in re-offending since 2000 and the juvenile results show a 2.8 per cent. reduction since 2000. Reductions in re-offending are measured by comparing the actual rate of proven re-offending to a predicted rate (which controls for changes in offenders characteristics) which is based on the results of the 2000 dataset.

The following tables set out adult and juvenile results since 2000.


Percentage change in re-offending

Actual re-offending rate

Predicted re-offending rate


















Actual re-offending rate

Predicted re-offending rate

Percentage change in re-offending (reduction)










1 Unavailable.

A great deal of work is being taken forward across Government to build on this success. Reducing re-offending is a key element of the new Home Office Crime Strategy “Cutting Crime: A New Partnership 2008-11”. The new “Make Communities Safer” Public Service Agreement sets a target both to reduce adult and youth re-offending, and to reduce the level of serious re-offences. NOMS and DIUS will be producing an overarching Strategic Plan in spring 2008 to set out how the Government intend to meet this challenge and a consultation paper will be published shortly. Alongside this consultation, we will also be consulting on an Offender Health and Social Care Strategy and a NOMS Third Sector Action Plan. While these will focus on specific elements of work to reduce re-offending, they will support the overarching Strategic Plan, and underscore the Government’s commitment to tackling re-offending holistically.

The Youth Justice Board (YJB) is working to reduce youth re-offending. The YJB has a scaled approach to youth justice interventions to ensure that youth offending services focus on those children and young people most likely to re-offend. The YJB has developed the assessment tool “Asset” which is used by all Youth Offending Teams (YOTs) to identify the risk factors driving offending behaviour and the protective factors that will support desistance. Asset is used to design a “multi modal” package of interventions to reduce risk factors and build up the protective factors. The Wiring-Up Youth Justice Programme is providing YOTs with the latest technology to improve the speed and quality of information transfer between YOTs, secure establishments and other key service providers.

The new local government performance framework which contains six specific youth justice indicators (out of total of 197) provides YOTs with an excellent lever to encourage local authority chief executives to prioritise young offenders’ access to services.

The reducing re-offending agenda also makes important contributions to a number of other cross-Government PSAs including, PSA 16: Increase the proportion of socially excluded adults in settled accommodation, employment, education or training; PSA 25: Reduce the harm caused by Drugs and Alcohol and PSA 24: Deliver a more effective transparent and responsive Criminal Justice System for victims and the public.

We are introducing new ways of measuring progress on reducing re-offending, which will include reducing the reporting time lag in the adult results from two years to one year and producing a metric to provide a more detailed understanding of the volume and seriousness of re-offences.