HC Deb 26 July 1979 vol 971 cc387-8W
Mr. Bevan

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what were the precise amounts of money spent per annum, in the last five years on giving assistance and awards, and in compensation by the judiciary, Government and agencies to the victims of crime, and particularly of violent crime; what is his policy regarding increasing the amounts of such financial assistance, awards and compensation in the future; and what measures he proposes to ensure that convicted criminals compensate their victims, in full or in part, without State assistance.

Mr. Whitelaw

Information regarding the amounts of compensation disbursed by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board, under the terms of the criminal injuries compensation scheme, to the victims of crimes of violence is given in the successive annual reports of the board.

I announced in a written answer on 23 July a revision of the scheme, the main feature of which was its extension to certain victims of violence within the family.

Information is not collected regarding the amounts of compensation ordered by the criminal courts in the exercise of their powers to require convicted persons to pay compensation to the victims of their offences. The exercise by the courts of those powers is at their discretion. They are aware of the importance that Parliament and successive Governments have attached to the principle that offenders should be required to compensate their victims wherever practicable.