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.
1. How many cars were reported stolen to Northumbria Police in the period between and inclusive of May 1, 2020 and April 30, 2021?
2. How many cars reported stolen to Northumbria Police in the period between and inclusive of May 1, 2020 and April 30, 2021 were successfully recovered by the force?
3. A list of cars by manufacturer and model reported stolen to Northumbria Police in the period between and inclusive of May 1, 2020 and April 30, 2021
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 in part by Northumbria Police however cannot be disclosed for the reasons outlined below.
The information is not already held statistically nor is it held in a format that would allow its extraction within the permitted 18 hour threshold.
We are not able to distinguish between cars and other types of motor vehicle (eg, vans) without manually checking each crime. For the time period requested in excess of 1350 crimes have been recorded under HO codes 048/01 (Theft of Motor Vehicle) and 048/02 (Taking a motor vehicle). Each of these would require a manual review to establish a response to your request. Even at a conservative estimate of 3 minutes per record, which we have considered as a reasonable minimum, we have estimated that to locate, extract and compile this information would take over 67 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.
When applying Section 12 exemption our duty to assist under Section 16 of the Act would normally entail that we contact you to determine whether it is possible to refine the scope of your request to bring it within the cost limits. However, from the information we have outlined above I see no reasonable way in which we can do so.