HC Deb 22 October 2003 vol 411 cc637-8W
Mr. Gibb

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will estimate the cost of burglary to(a) the commercial sector, (b) the public sector and (c) private individuals in each year between 1995 and 2002. [128546]

Ms Blears

The Home Office made estimates of the economic and social cost of crime in England and Wales in 1999–2000. Estimates were published in Home Office Research Study 217 (HORS 217), "The economic and social costs of crime". This study estimated that the average burglary in a dwelling costs society around £2,300 (including £830 in property stolen and damaged). The average burglary not in a dwelling costs society around £2,700 (including £1,200 in property stolen and damaged). It is currently not possible to make a distinction between public and commercial sector burglary in respect of costs.

These figures for numbers of burglaries recorded can be applied to the estimates of the average costs of burglaries presented in HORS 217. This gives total costs of recorded burglary as follows:

Table 1—Total economic and social cost of burglaries recorded by

the police, 1995 to 2002–03 (constant 2000 prices)

£ million
Burglary and

aggravated burglary

in a dwelling

Burglary and

aggravated burglary

other than in a dwelling

1995 1,480 1,609
1996 1,385 1,519
1997 1,194 1,339
1997–98 1,154 1,314
1998–99 1,088 1,293
1998–99 1,089 1,296
1999–2000 1,018 1,252
2000–01 927 1,169
2001–02 990 1,210
2002–03 1,007 1,219

However, these figures do not take into account those burglaries which are not reported to the police. The British Crime Survey (BCS) collects information on household burglaries which are both reported and not reported, and figures for numbers of household burglaries for the period 1995 to 2002–03 are reported in HOSB 07/03. These can be used to derive estimates for the total costs (in constant prices) of household burglary over this period are given in Table 2. The BCS does not provide information on burglaries in premises other than households.

Table 2—Numbers of household burglaries reported in the British

Crime Survey, with estimated total economic and social costs

(constant 2000 prices), 1995 to 2002–03

£ million
Burglaries Total cost
1995 1,743,000 4,009
1997 1,589,000 3,655
1999 1,261,000 2,900
2001–02 966,000 2,222
2002–03 974,000 2,240