To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Fareham (Mr. Hoban) on 26 February 2007, Official Report, column 1076W, on the police national computer (PNC), how many PNC records were checked for the purposes of the audit; and what percentage this was of the total number of records on the PNC at the time.
The audits were two research exercises in 2001 and 2002 undertaken by the Home Office to assess the accuracy of criminal record information held on the Police National Computer partly in preparation for the establishment of the Criminal Records Bureau. The first exercise compared 5,543 offence records extracted from the Court Proceedings database with the equivalent information on the Police National Computer. This comprised court results for all courts in England and Wales on a single day selected at random. The second exercise focused on a sample of convictions for sex offences and comprised three periods of one month each spanning a three year period. A total of 3,236 offence records were checked in respect of 1,298 people. The research does not show what percentage of this was the total number of records on the PNC at the time.