§ Mr. Jim Cunningham
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to introduce a compensation scheme for loss of earnings and hardship for remand prisoners who are acquitted. 
§ Mr. Kirkhope
Such a case would not fall within the statutory provision for compensation for miscarriages of justice. However, in accordance with the policy set out by my right hon. Friend the Member for Witney (Mr. Hurd) on 29 November 1995, columns691–92, we are prepared to pay compensation on an ex gratia basis to people who have spent a period in custody, following a conviction or charge, where we are satisfied that this has resulted from serious public default by a member of a police force or of some other public authority, or where there are other exceptional circumstances.