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Electronic Tagging

Justice written question – answered on 18th July 2013.

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Photo of Elfyn Llwyd Elfyn Llwyd Shadow PC Spokesperson (Wales), Plaid Cymru Westminster Leader, Shadow PC Spokesperson (Constitution), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Foreign Affairs), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Home Affairs), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Justice), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Defence), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice

(1) how his Department plans to monitor the effectiveness of GPS-style tagging of offenders by private companies;

(2) what estimate his Department has made of the cost of introducing GPS tagging of offenders;

(3) what research his Department has undertaken into the effectiveness of GPS-style electronic tagging of offenders.

Photo of Jeremy Wright Jeremy Wright The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

The electronic monitoring contracts are currently being competed and new contracts are due to come into force next year. These contracts will include monitoring the effectiveness of new technology, including GPS capability, as part of the contract management process. As part of the competition we will test the effectiveness of the new technology before full deployment.

The extent of the use of GPS technology under the new contracts, and hence the cost, will depend on a range of factors including the relevant provisions of the Crime and Courts Act 2013, the outcome of the technical testing, and the outcome of the competition itself. However, we intend the competition to achieve significant cost savings compared with the cost of current provision.

The Ministry of Justice published an evaluation of the earlier pilots of satellite tracking of offenders in August 2007. This is available at:


The numbers quoted in this report are based on pilot data from 2004 to 2006, and do not provide a basis for extrapolating figures for the new contracts.

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