§ Mr. Cummings
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many violent crimes occurred in the Easington sub division of the Durham County Police Authority in(a) 2000, (b) 2001 and (c) 2002; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Ms Blears
Numbers of violent crimes which occurred in Easington are recorded and published at Basic Command Unit (BCU) level. Violent crime is comprised of violence against the person, sexual offences and robbery. The requested information is given in the table.
Number of violent crimes recorded by the police for Easington Basic Command Unit Crimes recorded Violence against the person Sexual offences Robbery 1999–2000 729 48 21 2000–01 629 35 22 2001–02 820 39 35 2002–03 1,095 33 51
The National Crime Recording Standard (NCRS) was introduced across England and Wales in April 2002. Some police forces adopted the Standard prior to this date. Durham police force introduced the Standard in January 2002. Broadly, the NCRS had the effect of increasing the number of crimes recorded by the police. Therefore, following the introduction of the Standard, numbers of recorded crimes are not directly comparable with previous years.