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Armed Forces: Young People

Volume 498: debated on Wednesday 28 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what arrangements he has made for civilian inspectorates to scrutinise elements of the Service Justice System in order to meet his commitment to implement recommendation 26 of the Blake Review; what the timetable for such inspections is; what recommendations have been made arising from those inspections that have been completed; and if he will place a copy of the summary of findings and recommendations of inspections in the Library. (295196)

In line with the Government’s response to the Blake Review recommendations 24 and 26, arrangements have been made with each of the relevant inspectorates to ensure that all elements of the Service Justice System are inspected regularly. Information about completed and scheduled inspections are provided below:

Service Police—Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary conducted its first full inspection of Royal Military Police Special Investigations Branch in June 2006; a second inspection is planned for 2011. It inspected the RAF Special Investigations Branch this year for the first time, and the first inspection of the RN Special Investigations Branch is scheduled for 2010. Inspections of the wider single service police forces are currently being considered;

Military Court Service—Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Court Administration is currently conducting its first inspection, and is scheduled to report in April 2010. The inspection will also include legal aid and probation services;

Service Prosecuting Authority—Her Majesty’s Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate published its report of its inspection of the Army Prosecuting Authority in June 2007. The new tri-Service Service Prosecuting Authority having only been created in 2009, its first inspection is not expected before late 2010 at the earliest;

Military Corrective Training Centre, Colchester—Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons first conducted a full inspection in 2004. It reported on its latest inspection in January 2009, and is scheduled to carry out its next inspection in 2012.

The precise dates of inspections are dependent on inspectorates’ programmes and priorities. Full inspections are scheduled to take place approximately every two years, approximately every three years for Military Corrective Training Centre, with unannounced or follow up inspections taking place in between if considered necessary.

Each inspectorate publishes its findings on its website found at the following links: