§ Mr. Arthur Lewis
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will give as much detailed information as may be readily available showing for the longest and most convenient period of time the number of unconvicted persons in prison awaiting trial, the costs of such imprisonment. And the period of time such incarcerations have been in operation.
§ Mr. Mayhew
Information about the number of persons held on remand awaiting trial in prison department establishments in England and Wales in recent years is given in the following table. A further table gives estimates, for the latest available date of the numbers of such prisoners held for various lengths of time; these numbers are not typical because those held in police cells are not included, comparable information not being available in respect of them.
Details of the cost of maintaining an inmate in custody in the financial year 1978–79 are published in appendix No.4 of the "Report on the Work of the Prison Department 1979"—Cmnd. 7965.
Table 1 Prisoners awaiting trial in prison department establishments in England and Wales on 30 November: 1976–80 Date Number of persons 30 November 1976 3,506 30 November 1977 3,860 30 November 1978 3,811 30 November 1979 4,109 30 November 1980* 2,222 * On 1 December 1980 2,433 persons were awaiting trail in police cells because of industrial action by prison officers.
Table 2 Prisoners awaiting trial on 30 November 1980 in prison department establishments in England and Wales: by length of time since first remand in custody Length of time since first remand in sustody* Estimated number of persons† Less than one week 300 One week or more and up to and including one month 300 Over one month and up to and including three months 700 Over three months and up to and including six months 500 Over six months 400 Total 2,222 * Including any time which may have been spent on bail. † Rounded estimates: precise figures are not available and so components do not add to total.