§ Mr. Alex Carlile
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the system whereby potential patients of special hospitals are assessed prior to sentence by a court; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Michael Forsyth
Any court, before sentencing may seek psychiatric reports on a defendant. The overall effectiveness of these arrangements has been substantially enhanced by the creation, with the Government's active support, of over 100 local schemes in England and Wales aiming to provide assessment and access to treatment and care for mentally disordered defendants at the earliest opportunity.