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Wildlife: Crime

Volume 475: debated on Wednesday 7 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if she will instigate a joint review by the police and prosecution inspectorates into wildlife crime in England. (202680)

The work of the Inspectorates, both singly and jointly, is increasingly subject to risk assessment to ensure that it's targeted on those issues that are of greatest concern to the public and to local communities. In recent years this has included such issues as tackling serious and organised crime and addressing counter terrorism.

Wildlife crime is not one of the subjects for joint inspection agreed for 2008-09. The topics for inspection were subjected to comprehensive consultation and then prioritised through risk assessment. The issue of wildlife crime did not feature from any of the consultees and was not part of the long list for 2008-09 or the final list that has been decided.

For the Home Secretary to instigate inspection activity associated with wildlife crime it would have to be clear which aspects meet the threshold and how inspection would add value or improve performance in this issue.

The Home Office has recently announced that it will contribute £150,000 per year for three years to the National Wildlife Crime Unit. Government officials will be working closely with the Association of Chief Police Officers and the NWCU to monitor the outcomes achieved through this funding.