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Date Responded 14 January 2020

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:

  1. A yearly breakdown of the total number of reported stolen cars. Could you please provide a breakdown for the past three years, starting with 2016/2017, 2017/2018, 2018/2019
  2. A yearly breakdown of the number of reported stolen cars that were privately owned and business owned. Could you please provide a breakdown for the past three years, starting with 2016/2017, 2017/2018, 2018/2019
  3. A yearly breakdown of the number of privately owned stolen car reports that were then investigated by your police force. Could you please provide a breakdown for the past three years, starting with 2016/2017, 2017/2018, 2018/2019
  4. A yearly breakdown of the number of business owned stolen car reports that were then investigated by your police force. Could you please provide a breakdown for the past three years, starting with 2016/2017, 2017/2018, 2018/2019

In Response:

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

To establish a response for question 2 alone would require approximately 5,525 records to be located and manually reviewed to establish which business owned or privately owned.  Even at a conservative estimate of 5 minutes per record, which we have considered as reasonable, we have estimated that to extract this information would take in excess of 4690 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.  Additional time would then be required to research the information required at questions 3 and 4.

You should consider this to be a refusal notice under Section 17 of the Act for 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 for question 1.

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

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