Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Questions (545, 546)

Ciara Conway

Question:

545. Deputy Ciara Conway asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if he will provide in tabular form the number of convictions that have resulted in citizens being jailed due to the non-payment of fines for 2008, 2009, 2010, 20011 and 2012; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8274/13]

View answer

Ciara Conway

Question:

546. Deputy Ciara Conway asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if he will provide in tabular form the number of convictions in the courts in Waterford City and county that have resulted in citizens being jailed due to the non-payment of fines for the years of 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8275/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 545 and 546 together.

A breakdown of the number of persons imprisoned solely for non-payment of fines for each of 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 is set out in the following table.

Year

Number of Persons

2008

2,344

2009

4,350

2010

5,995

2011

6,727

2012*

7,467

* The 2012 figure is provisional pending the publication of the Irish Prison Service Annual Report.

I can also advise the Deputy that the number of such persons held in custody at any one time is a tiny fraction of the overall prisoner population. To illustrate this point, on 15 February, 2013, 9 people (0. 21 %), out of a prison population of 4,262 in custody that day fell into this category. Statistics in respect of the number of convictions in the courts in Waterford City and County which have resulted in imprisonment due to the non-payment of fines are not maintained by the Irish Prison Service.