HC Deb 09 February 2004 vol 417 cc1291-2W
Mr. Jim Cunningham

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement on his plans for increases in fines for drivers caught speeding; and how the extra money raised will help victims of(a) crime and (b) road traffic accidents. [149095]

Paul Goggins

[holding answer 21 January 2004]I would refer my hon. Friend to the Written Ministerial Statement made by my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary on 12 January 2004,Official Report, column 18WS. This announced the publication of a consultation paper entitled 'Compensation and Support for Victims of Crime', which set out proposals to provide a wide range of support for victims of crime and to amend the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme.

A central plank of the proposals was to make all offenders pay for their crimes and to help all victims.

One of the key proposals was to add a surcharge to all criminal convictions, and to fixed penalty notices for criminal offences. The surcharge would be additional to the fine or any other penalty imposed, and would be payable by those who were convicted of a criminal offence, those who receive a penalty notice for disorder, and those who receive a fixed penalty notice for a road traffic offence, including drivers breaking the law by speeding.

The money raised through the surcharge would go into a new Victims' Fund, as would monies raised in the other ways described in the consultation paper. The money from that fund would be spent directly on services for victims of crime including, for example, victims of rape and sexual assault, victims of domestic violence and hate crime, and the many seriously injured victims of road traffic incidents and the bereaved relatives of victims.

We welcome comment on all the ideas and proposals set out in the consultation paper. Subject to the outcome of this consultation exercise, we propose to legislate to make the changes, where necessary, through amendments to the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Bill currently before Parliament.