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Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 16 December 2021

Thursday, 16 December 2021

Questions (492)

Holly Cairns

Question:

492. Deputy Holly Cairns asked the Minister for Justice the number of prosecutions and-or convictions under Part 4 of the Purchase of Sexual Services of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) Act 2017 since the Act was commenced until 1 December 2021, in tabular form; the number of persons prosecuted and-or convicted who identified as sex workers; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [62824/21]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

At the outset I would emphasise to the Deputy that prosecutions are a matter for the Director of Public Prosecutions who is independent in the performance of her functions.

I am informed by the Garda authorities that a search of the PULSE database was conducted on 14 December 2021 for charges and summons associated with Part 4, Purchase of Sexual Services of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) Act 2017.

The number of Charges/Summons in the period March 2017 to the 1 December 2021 is shown in the table below.

Proceeding Type

Count

Charge

10

Summons

57

Total

67

Incident data is based upon operational data from the PULSE system as was available at 01:00 on 14 December 2021 and is liable to change.

With regard to the information sought on the number of convictions, I am informed by the Courts Service that this information is not yet maintained in such a way as to provide the response sought by the Deputy. It can only be retrieved by way of a manual examination of each individual court record. As I am sure the Deputy will appreciate, this would require the expenditure of a disproportionate amount of staff time and resources and it is therefore not possible to provide the level of detail sought.

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