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I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Ministry of Justice.
The number of defendants proceeded against at magistrates courts for offences relating to air weapons in England and Wales from 2007 to 2011 can be viewed in the following table.
|Defendants proceeded against at magistrates court for offences relating to air weapons(1), England and Wales, 2007-11(2, 3)|
|(1) Includes those offences where air weapons can be specifically identified under the Firearms Act 1968: Sections 3(2); 21A; 22(4), and (2) The figures given in the table relate to persons for whom these offences were the principal offences for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences it is the offence for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe. (3) Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts and police forces. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used. (4) Excludes data for Cardiff magistrates court for April, July and August 2008. Source: Justice Statistics Analytical Services—Ministry of Justice.|