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Number plate offences - 902/20

Date Responded 29 June 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:

I understand that when a fixed penalty notice is issued by police for a number plate offence, the DVLA is informed of the offence.
I also understand that if a second offence is recorded for the same registration number and vehicle keeper, the DVLA will withdraw the registration number, and issue a new one.

1. How many times from 2015 to 2020 (to date) has your force informed the DVLA it has issued a penalty notice for a number plate that does not comply with the requirements of the Road Vehicles (Display of Registration Marks) Regulations 2001? Please break this information down by calendar year.

2. How many times from 2015 to 2020 (to date) has your force issued two penalty notices relating to the same registration number and vehicle keeper for failing to comply with the requirements of the Road Vehicles (Display of Registration Marks) Regulations 2001? Please break this information down by calendar year.

In Response:

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

Information Commissioners Office (ICO) guidelines state that:

A public authority must confirm or deny whether it holds the information requested unless the cost of this alone would exceed the appropriate limit.
I can neither confirm nor deny that the information you require is held by Northumbria Police as to actually determine if it is held would exceed the permitted 18 hours therefore Section 12(2) 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.

I have set out the reasons for this below.
This information is not already held statistically nor is it held in a format that would allow verification its held or to allow its extraction. Initial searches have indicated that several hundred records would need to be located, reviewed and cross referenced to establish a response to the questions posed. This exercise has been assessed as far exceeding the 18 hour threshold and therefore Section 12 (2) is applicable.

Due to the numbers of records involved in this request, I am unable to provide a suggestion as to how to refine your request to bring it within the retrievable cost threshold.

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