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Television Licence

Culture Media and Sport written question – answered on 14th March 2006.

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Photo of Jo Swinson Jo Swinson Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Scotland)

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many (a) prosecutions and (b) convictions for television licence evasion there were in each of the last five years; and how many in each category were of women.

Photo of Hazel Blears Hazel Blears Minister of State (Home Office) (Policing, Security and Community Safety), Member, Labour Party National Executive Committee

I have been asked to reply.

The information from the court proceedings database held by the Office for Criminal Justice Reform is contained in the table and shows the number of people prosecuted against at magistrates courts and convicted at all courts for offences under the Wireless Telegraphy Acts 1949 to 1969 (mainly television license evasion) and the Communications Act 2003, in England and Wales, 2000–2004.

Number of defendants prosecuted and convicted for offences relating to television licence evasion in England and Wales, 2000–04(1) -- Defendants
Prosecuted Convicted
Male Female Total(2) Male Female Total(2)
2000 44,057 77,067 121,137 37,314 68,400 105,726
2001 34,174 62,297 96,484 28,611 55,128 83,751
2002 39,421 70,739 110,170 33,465 63,124 96,596
2003 35,640 58,257 93,915 29,247 50,609 79,870
2004(3) 43,724 71,900 115,643 35,531 62,221 97,766

(1) These data are on the principal offence basis.

(2) Total figures include other defendants such as companies.

(3) The TV licensing provisions of the Wireless Telegraphy Act 1949 were replaced by new provisions in the Communications Act 2003 which came into effect 1 April 2004.


RDS-Office for Criminal Justice Reform

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