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Crime: Drugs

Volume 698: debated on Monday 21 January 2008

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How many people were charged with drug-related offences in Northern Ireland in 2006 and 2007 respectively; and how many were convicted. [HL1241]

The information is not available in the format requested. Table 1 gives the number of recorded drug offences and the subsequent number that were cleared by means of a charge or summons 2004-05 to 2006-07.

Prosecution and conviction data for 2006 and 2007 are not yet available and therefore figures documented in Table 2 refer to the calendar years 2004 and 2005. Data are collated on the principal offence rule; so only the most serious offence with which an offender is charged is included.

Recorded crime data cannot be routinely reconciled with prosecution and conviction data as the former relate to the number of offences whereas the latter relate to the number of offenders brought before the courts. In addition, recorded crime data denote each offence as has been initially recorded and this may differ from the offence for which a suspect or suspects are subsequently proceeded against in the courts.

Table 1: Number of recorded drug offences and the number cleared by means of a charge or summons 2004-05 to 2006-07

All drug offences

Number recorded

Cleared by means of a charge or summons

2004-05

2,622

1,001

2005-06

2,944

1,201

2006-07

2,411

1,291

Source: PSNI, Central Statistics Unit

Table 2: Number prosecuted and convicted for drug offences 2004 and 2005

Prosecuted

Convicted

2004

663

590

2005

678

612

Source: NIO, Statistics and Research Branch