Stopping Cambridge Burglars Re-Offending on Release from Prison


Monday, February 1st, 2016. 3:11am


According to the police in Cambridge burglaries are often committed by burglars who re-offend when they are released from prison.

Offenders do not serve their whole sentence in prison, they are released while still serving their sentence, and supposedly under supervision. In Cambridge that supervision is, as I understand it, undertaken by The Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Community Rehabilitation Company, a private company owned by Sodexo.

The rehabilitation company is represented on the board of Cambridge’s Community Safety Partnership.

I have submitted the following statement to the Cambridge Community Safety Partnership meeting on the 2nd of February 2016:

In relation to the “personal property crime” priority report I would like to urge the board and members to determine if the Community Rehabilitation Company is working effectively with those released from prison and the local policing teams in Cambridge.

Are local police officers informed when relevant offenders are due to be released from prison? Do those released have access to accommodation, and money, giving them the option to practically live without resorting to crime?

My comments are prompted by reports from our local police officers to Cambridge’s area committees where the neighbourhood sergeants have told residents and councillors those who’ve just been released from prison are responsible for significant amounts of acquisitive crime.

At the East Area Committee on Thursday, 28th January, 2016 Sgt Norden reported orally:

“Dwelling burglary is up in the last three months. It’s up by quite a lot. To explain why. Some burglars have come out of prison. It’s that simple.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XYF2_L_jKC4&t=10m52s

At the North Area Committee on Wednesday, 20th January, 2016 Sgt Wragg reported orally:

“A lot of this shoplifting in the North Area is done by one particular individual. He goes to prison on a very regular basis. He comes out for about two or three weeks when he absolutely hammers us for shoplifting.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tjlOeuS2k78&t=7m25s

I am raising this as I want to support our local police officers and from the tone and content of their presentations at Cambridge’s area committees they appear frustrated by the fact people are re-offending on release from prison.

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2 comments/updates on “Stopping Cambridge Burglars Re-Offending on Release from Prison

  1. Richard Taylor Article author

    I’ve submitted the following to the next meeting of the Partnership:

    I would like to use the public questions agenda item at the 26 April meeting of the Cambridge Community Safety Partnership to ask the following questions related to agenda items:

    1. Re: Agenda Item 7, Action points: Review

    The papers note the partnership received a response to the public question I asked at the last meeting from BeNCH CRC Ltd on 11 April 2016.

    Could the partnership please send me a copy of the response and publish it online with the meeting papers?

  2. Richard Taylor Article author

    I’ve now been sent the response from The Bedfordshire Northamptonshire Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Rehabilitation Company (BeNCH CRC) which is owned by Sodexo:

    Do those released have access to accommodation, and money, giving them the option to practically live without resorting to crime?

    Following the enactment of the Offender Rehabilitation Act – Feb 2014 there has for the first time been an opportunity to work with adult (post 21) offenders released from short sentences (<12 Month) – Now the majority of adult offenders will receive a period of post sentence supervision.

    The CRC is in the process of aligning with a target operating model developed by the company owners Sodexo. This has introduced a supply chain of specialist agencies who provide a range of support services which extends provision for this group and which includes provision of “Through the Gate” services for prisoners both in custody and on release. This includes accommodation support which is delivered through a number of different organisations across the four counties which make up the BeNCH contract package area. Our supply chain providers include St Mungos Broadway, St Giles, The Langley House Trust and Stepping Stones – all of whom deliver accommodation support and or support with finance and debt.

    Are local police officers informed when relevant offenders are due to be released from prison?

    The CRC is closely involved as a key partner in I.O.M initiatives as part of which there is information sharing and targeting of key individuals. Prior to January 2015 we did share information about releases with the police albeit through different processes in the different counties which make up BeNCH. We are currently reviewing how best to communicate relevant information to the Police given changes in our structure.

    We understand that the questions arise in part as a response to observations about small number of individuals who impact crime intensely in a particular locality. These are exactly the people who we would expect the multi-agency IOM schemes to manage under their specific protocols.

    The CSP is reminded that BeNCH CRC is only one of the probation providers and that the National Probation Service continues to manage certain categories of offender including those managed under Multi Agency Public Protection Arrangements.

    Stuart Wallis

    The Bedfordshire Northamptonshire Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Rehabilitation Company (BeNCH CRC)

    11 April 2016

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