§ Mr. Thomas Cox
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the number of indictable offences involving people under the age of 21 years; and what percentage this figure represents of the total number of indictable offences committed in this country, during the last three years.
§ Mr. Carlisle
Statistics relating the incidence of crime to particular age groups can be collected only in respect of persons against whom criminal proceedings are brought. Information on this basis, for England and Wales, is as follows:
(1) (2) (3) Number of persons found guilty of indictable offences Number of persons aged under 21 found guilty of indictable offences Column (2) as a percentage of column (1) 1968 … 257,327 120,961 47.0 1969* … 283,825 129,921 45.8 1969 … 304,070 144,784 47.6 1970† … 322,898 151,323 46.9 *Adjusted figures to take account of the Theft Act 1968. so as to provide a comparison with 1968. † Provisional figures.
A number of factors make these figures an unreliable guide to the proportion of indictable crime likely to be committed by persons aged under 21.