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Arrests for Child Destruction (1309A/23)


  1. Please provide details of how many a) arrests and b) charges have been made under each of the following legislation: i) s58 OAPA (1861), ii) s59 OAPA (1861) and iii) s1 Infant Preservation Act (1929) from January 1st 2012 to present. Please break these figures down year on year and by sex of the alleged perpetrator.

Please see exemplar FoI response from the Metropolitan Police on this link:

2. Please also include redacted copies of any relevant police reports related to each arrest and/or charge (in particular any noting details of whether the offence was committed via legally or illegally obtained abortion pills, physical assault, or other means), and if possible please also include any other illegal abortion arrests/charges made under other pieces of legislation.


With regard to question 1, the specific legislation used to arrest an individual cannot be determined from our data, therefore we have instead searched for the relevant offences where they are listed as ‘reason for arrest’ or where they are listed on the custody record. Please find attached our response (1309A_Attachment). With regard to question 2, please be advised that there are no summary detail fields within custody records, therefore we are unable to provide this information. With regard to any other reports contained within custody records, this information would be exempt from disclosure by virtue of Section 30 (Investigations) and Section 40 (Personal information) as it would constitute investigative material.

Please note that these data should be interpreted with caution. 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 a number of data sources used by forces for police purposes. The detail collected to respond specifically to your request is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large scale recording system. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when interpreting those data.

The figures provided therefore are our best interpretation of relevance of data to your request, but you should be aware that the collation of figures for ad hoc requests may have limitations and this should be taken into account when those data are used.

If you decide to write an article / use the enclosed data we would ask you to take into consideration the factors highlighted in this document so as to not mislead members of the public or official bodies, or misrepresent the relevance of the whole or any part of this disclosed material.