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Cannabis: Cumbria

Volume 487: debated on Thursday 5 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) how many successful prosecutions for the possession of cannabis there have been in (a) Cumbria and (b) Copeland constituency in each of the last five years; (253618)

(2) how many (a) arrests, (b) prosecutions and (c) convictions there were of people from each district council ward in Copeland for (i) the possession and (ii) the supplying of cannabis in the last five years;

(3) how many of the successful prosecutions for the supplying of cannabis in (a) Cumbria and (b) Copeland involved (i) offenders resident outside of Cumbria and (ii) young offenders in the last five years;

(4) how many successful prosecutions for the supplying of cannabis there have been in (a) Cumbria and (b) Copeland in each of the last five years; how many of each resulted in a custodial sentence in each year; and how many resulted in offenders taking part in a drug rehabilitation programme in each year.

The information requested is set out as follows:

Court proceedings

Information on the number of defendants proceeded against at magistrates courts and found guilty at all courts for the possession and supply of cannabis in Cumbria for 2003 to 2007, broken down by age is in table 1.

Information on the number of defendants given a custodial sentence and given drug treatment and testing orders for the supply of cannabis are in table 2. Drug treatment and testing orders were replaced in 2006 by community orders (not currently collected by the Ministry of Justice) which can comprise a number of possible requirements including a drug treatment programme.

Information held centrally on the Court Proceedings Database from which the data has been derived does not include information on constituencies and the residence of defendants.

Arrests

The arrests collection held by the Home Office covers arrests for recorded crime (notifiable offences) only, broken down at a main offence group level, covering categories such as violence against the person, sexual offences and drug offences. From these centrally reported data, we are not able to identify specific offences from within the main offence groups.

Data are reported to the Home Office at police force area level only therefore further breakdowns of data by district council ward are not available.

Table 1: Number of defendants proceeded against at magistrates courts and found guilty at all courts for the possession and supply1 of cannabis, in the Cumbria police force area, 2003-07, broken down by age 2, 3

Proceeded against

Found guilty

Offence

Age

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

Possession

10 to 17

33

26

42

30

14

27

24

40

28

11

18 and over

192

94

78

84

94

178

80

65

75

89

All ages

225

120

120

114

108

205

104

105

103

100

Supply

10 to 17

4

1

1

1

1

4

1

1

1

18 and over

27

15

9

15

20

20

17

4

10

16

All ages

31

16

10

16

21

24

18

5

11

16

1 Includes “Supplying or offering to supply” and “Possession with intent to supply”.

2 The statistics relate to persons for whom these offences were the principal offences for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences, the principal offence is the offence for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe.

3 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.

Source:

Evidence and Analysis Unit, Office for Criminal Justice Reform.

Table 2: Custodial sentences and drug treatment and testing orders for supplying cannabis offences1, Cumbria police force area, 2003-07

Supply

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

Immediate custodial sentences

9

6

1

9

Drug treatment and testing order2

19

13

19

1 Includes “Supplying or offering to supply” and “Possession with intent to supply”.

2 Now replaced by community order which can comprise a number of possible requirements including a drug treatment programme, however, these data are not currently collected by the Ministry of Justice.

Notes:

1. Although care is taken when processing and analysing the returns, the detail collected is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large scale recording system.

2. These figures have been drawn from administrative data systems.

3. These data are based on the principal offence basis.

Source:

OMS Analytical Services, Ministry of Justice.