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Land Registry: Fraud

Volume 492: debated on Wednesday 20 May 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) how many convictions there have been for offences of property title theft in respect of (a) mortgaged, (b) non-mortgaged and (c) vacant properties in each of the last 10 years; (275156)

(2) how many convictions there have been for offences of fraud in relation to property leases in each of the last 10 years;

(3) how many convictions for offences of property transfer fraud there have been in each of the last 10 years;

(4) how many convictions for offences of mortgage fraud there have been in each of the last 10 years;

(5) how many convictions for offences related to property fraud there were in each of the last 10 years.

The number of defendants found guilty at all courts for 'obtaining a property by deception' in England and Wales, for the years 1998 to 2007 is shown in the following table.

The Fraud Act 2006 which was implemented in January 2007 repealed eight sections of the Theft Acts 1968-1996, including section 15 of the Theft Act 1968, Obtaining property by deception.

The statistics provided in this answer are for fraud offences where either the statute or the offence description identifies the fraud as solely relating to either ‘property fraud’ or ‘mortgage fraud’. A number of other fraud offences may include ‘property or mortgage fraud’, but as the individual circumstances of the offence are not held on the court proceedings database maintained by the Office for Criminal Justice Reform, it is not possible to separately identify them.

These data are on the principal offence basis. The figures given in the table on court proceedings relate to persons for whom these offences were the principal offence for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences, the offence selected is the one 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.

Court proceedings data for 2008 will be available in the autumn of 2009.

The number of defendants found guilty at all courts for offences under the Theft Act 1968 Section 15, in England and Wales, 1998 to 20071, 2, 3, 4StatuteOffence description19981999200020012002200320042005200620073Theft Act 1968 Sec 15.Obtaining property by deception11,43811,47810,4309,4389,3548,4577,5196,4725,0802,470 1 These data are on the principal offence basis.2 Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete.3 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 The Fraud Act 2006 repealed S15 of the Theft Act 1968 and was implemented in January 2007.4 Staffordshire police force were only able to submit sample data for persons proceeded against and convicted in the magistrates' courts for the year 2000.Although sufficient to estimate higher orders of data, these data are not robust enough at a detailed level and have been excluded from the table.Source:OCJR—E and A: Office for Criminal Justice Reform—Evidence and Analysis Unit.Our ref: PQ 275156, 275157, 275161, 275162, and 275168 (Table)