§ Lord Colwyn
asked Her Majesty's Government:
How many serious offences were allegedly committed in 1987 by persons entitled to diplomatic immunity; and how many foreign diplomats were withdrawn from their posts in Britain in that year as a result of alleged offences.
§ The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Glenarthur)
Forty-three alleged serious offences by persons entitled to immunity were drawn to the attention of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 1987. "Serious offences" are defined in accordance with the report of the Foreign Affairs CommitteeThe Abuse of Diplomatic Immunities and Privileges (1985) as offences falling into a category which could in certain circumstances attract a penalty of six months or more; we are advised that very few of the alleged offences would have been likely to attract a custodial sentence. The majority involve drinking and driving and shoplifting.
Eighteen diplomats were withdrawn from their posts in Britain in 1987 following alleged offences.