§ Mr. Livingstone
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether any ex-service men who have been sentenced to a term of imprisonment have been re-enlisted; and what is his policy on such appointments.
§ Mr. Neubert
Records are not kept in a way which would allow us readily to identify whether any ex-service men with a prison record have been re-enlisted. Applications for re-enlistment are considered against the same criteria as are those applying to join for the first time. Any individual applying to join the armed services is obliged to declare any previous unspent convictions. While the general policy is not to accept for service those who have an unspent conviction involving a term of imprisonment, each case is considered on its own merits and there is provision for exceptions to be made.