HC Deb 04 March 2002 vol 381 c54W
Mrs. Spelman

To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department how many community fines were cancelled in the west midlands up to and including the year ending September 2001. [36121]

Mr. Wills

There are two types of non-custodial sentences: fines and community penalties. If a community penalty is breached the offender is brought back before the court for whatever action the court deems appropriate. This could mean that the court imposes further hours on the order or an additional condition. Alternatively it could result in the order being revoked and the offender instead receiving a term of imprisonment if such a sentence was available for the original offence. 1,398 community penalties were revoked in the west midlands in the year 2000.

A fine may be cancelled (remitted) in whole or in part by the courts if circumstances have changed since the conviction. A large proportion of financial penalties cancelled are where a defaulter is imprisoned for wilful refusal or culpable neglect to pay, or where a defaulter is already serving a prison term for a separate offence.

Statistics on the number of fines cancelled are not kept. The value of all impositions, including fines, cancelled in the West Midlands Magistrates Courts Committee area amounted to £7,643,470 in the year ending September 2001.