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Offenders: Drugs

Volume 487: debated on Tuesday 10 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many (a) males and (b) females aged (i) under 17, (ii) between 17 and 21, (iii) between 21 and 25, (iv) between 25 and 29 years of age and (v) over 30 years of age and older were convicted of drug offences in England and Wales in each of the last 10 years. (254367)

Information showing the number of males and females found guilty at all courts for drug offences in England and Wales broken down by age is given in the following table.

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.

Number of persons found guilty at all courts for drug offences, England and Wales, 1998 to 2007, broken down by age and sex1, 2, 3

Age

Sex

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

20044

2005

2006

2007

Male

1,137

1,395

1,748

2,176

2,455

2,630

2,420

2,513

2,431

2,842

Female

75

92

118

133

155

168

162

186

147

177

10 to 16

Total

1,212

1,487

1,866

2,309

2,610

2,798

2,582

2,699

2,578

3,019

Male

8,950

9,296

9,251

9,547

10,284

10,399

7,096

6,926

7,277

8,479

Female

705

775

725

742

735

660

522

521

470

490

17-20

Total

9,655

10,071

9,976

10,289

11,019

11,059

7,618

7,447

7,747

8,969

Male

9,075

8,829

8,222

8,650

9,348

9,605

6,686

6,450

6,439

7,510

Female

1,018

966

829

893

907

936

751

675

629

627

21-24

Total

10,093

9,795

9,051

9,543

10,255

10,541

7,437

7,125

7,068

8,137

Male

10,183

9,592

8,147

7,809

7,963

7,958

6,189

6,114

6,430

7,191

Female

1,257

1,216

1,003

897

1,011

1,024

844

824

792

825

25-29

Total

11,440

10,808

9,150

8,706

8,974

8,982

7,033

6,938

7,222

8,016

Male

14,380

14,413

12,697

12,989

14,239

15,490

12,600

12,882

13,073

14,396

Female

2,041

2,137

1,881

1,785

1,939

2,292

1,927

1,999

1,894

2,028

30 and over

Total

16,421

16,550

14,578

14,774

16,178

17,782

14,527

14,881

14,967

16,424

All ages

Total

48,821

48,711

44,621

45,621

49,036

51,162

39,197

39,090

39,582

44,565

1 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.

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.

3 Staffordshire police force were only able to supply a sample of data for magistrates courts proceedings covering one full week in each quarter for 2000. Estimates based on this sample are included in the figures, as they are considered sufficiently robust at this high level of analysis.

4 Cannabis was reclassified from a class B drug to a class C drug in January 2004, which also saw the introduction of the cannabis warning as an out of court disposal.

Source:

Evidence and Analysis Unit—Office for Criminal Justice Reform