§ Mr. Dobson
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will give the figures for street robberies in London for the most recent year for which figures are available and the five preceding years showing separately how many such robberies in each year were of mobile phones. 
§ Mr. Denham
[holding answer 25 March 2002]: Details of robbery of personal property have been collected centrally at the police force area level since 1 April 1998. Details of robbery of mobile phones are not routinely collected centrally.
Offences of robbery of personal property, for the Metropolitan police area Year ending March Number of offences 1998–99 23,062 1999–2000 32,068 2000–011 37,023 1 A boundary change on 1 April 2000 meant figures are not directly comparable with previous years.
The street crime initiative represents a step-change in cross-Government action to tackle street crime with a focused programme of action in the 10 police force areas where the problem is most acute.
Work that was already under way to support police in the 10 worst areas was brought forward to begin in April. This is supported by a cross-Government action group that works across the criminal justice system and the whole of Government in a concerted effort to tackle any obstacles to cutting street crime. The purpose of the group is to identify and support the implementation of actions which all the various agencies can take to tackling the problem of street crime, working together to bring about both an immediate and a sustainable long-term reduction.