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CPS Submissions - 1300/20

Date Responded 15 September 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:

May I please have both the percentage of cases and the raw number of cases submitted to the CPS by your police force, that were taken forward for prosecution or found to not meet the threshold? Could this be from 2015-2020.

In Response:

 

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

It should also be noted that we do not hold/record percentages and are not obliged to create new information under the act in order to satisfy a request, therefore our response is based solely on your request for “the raw numbers”.

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Criminal Justice 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 following reasons.

This information is not held centrally not in a format that would allow us to easily extract information specific to your request.  To establish a response to your request would require approximately 50,000 cases submitted to the CPS to be manually reviewed to establish which were taken forward for prosecution or found to not meet the threshold.  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 over 4,166 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.

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