HL Deb 04 November 2003 vol 654 cc92-3WA
Lord Dholakia

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How many faith-related incidents were prosecuted by the Crown Prosecution Service in England and Wales in the most recent years for which statistics are available. [HL4995]

Lord Goldsmith

Information held centrally by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) about prosecution decisions relating to religiously aggravated offences shows that since 14 December 2001, when the provisions of the Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001 came into effect, and 28 October 2003 when records were last updated, the police have submitted 57 cases involving one or more defendants and involving at least one allegation of a religiously aggravated offence to the CPS.

In three cases, the police requested advice from the CPS before any changes were instituted. In each of these three cases, the CPS advised that there was insufficient evidence for charges of any nature to be instituted. Of the remaining 54 cases;, the following outcomes have been recorded: in 24 cases, there was a conviction on at least one religiously aggravated charge; in three cases, there was a conviction on the basic, non-aggravated offence only; in five cases, there was an acquittal after trial; in two cases, the defendants agreed to be bound over, in six cases, the CPS discontinued proceedings. An outcome is awaited in 14 cases.

The quoted figures are collated centrally by CPS Policy Directorate based on reports received from the areas.