Intimate image abuse - 790/21

Date Responded 23 June 2021

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked:

I am requesting the following, all separated by year, from the years 2015 - 2021:

1. The number of cases of reports of intimate image abuse, including intimate images or videos that were taken or shared without consent of the victim.
2. Please specify the number of these allegations that dealt with altered intimate images or video (such as as deepfakes or synthetic media).
3. The number of these allegations which were made by women, the number that were made by men, and the number that were made by non-binary people.
4. The number of allegations that led to a conviction.
5. How many of these convictions were of men, how many of women, and how many of non-binary people?

In Response:

We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted within Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held in part by Northumbria Police however cannot be disclosed for the following reasons.

The information requested is not held in a format that allows its extraction within the 18 hour threshold.  In an attempt to offer a response a search for the offence of 'Disclose private sexual photographs and films with intent to cause distress' was made.  It should be noted that this offence did not come into force until April 2015.  This brought back in excess of 830 reports.  Each of those would require a manual review to establish a response at point 2, and then further searches on different systems would be required to establish how many convictions had been brought and the gender of each.  Even at a conservative estimate of  8  minutes per record, which we have considered as reasonable, we have estimated that to extract this information would take over 110 hours, therefore Section 12(1) of the Freedom of Information Act would apply. This section does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request for information if the authority estimated that the cost of complying with the request would exceed the appropriate limit of 18 hours, equating to £450.00

You should consider this to be a refusal notice under Section 17 of the Act for your request.

As part of your request would exceed the prescribed limit, as defined by the Act, there is no requirement for Northumbria Police to provide a response to the remaining parts of your request. However, in order to provide you with some assistance, under Section 16 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, an initial assessment of the information that may be provided within the time constraints would be questions 1 & 3 as set out above. 

If this would be useful, you may wish to refine and resubmit your request accordingly.

(Additionally It should be noted that currently Gender is recorded on the basis of male, female or unknown.)

Its not yet known if conviction data can be extracted within the permitted time constraints, this will depend on the number of returns generated, however this part may best be directed to the courts for them to advise if they are able to provide to you.


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