§ Mr. Peter Bottomley
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how frequently, after what delays, and with what precision, he publishes information on the number of people convicted for the first time of a standard list offence. 
§ Mr. Michael
Information is published annually on people convicted of a standard list offence for the first time. The most recent figures are for 1995 and were published in November 1997. They appeared in Chapter 9 of "Criminal Statistics, England and Wales, 1996" (Cm. 3764). Information is based on a sample of those convicted of a standard list offence in three sample weeks and is presented as a percentage of the total sample.
In 1995, the sample size was 18,000 (out of an annual total of 353,000). In 1995, the estimated percentage of offenders with a first conviction was 35 per cent. The chance that the annual rate differs from this by more than one percentage point is about 1 in 200.