I would be grateful if you would treat this correspondence as a formal request for disclosure of the following information, under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (“FOI”).
Description of information sought:
1) Since 1 January 2012, please give specific names of locations or premises in your force area where it is known to police that Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) has taken place
2) Since 1 January 2012, please give specific names of locations or premises in your force area where people who were the subject of missing person reports, who were known to be at risk of CSE, have been located
3) Since 1 January 2012, please give specific names of locations or premises in your force area where children known to be at risk of CSE were trafficked
4) For each location and premises listed above please specify:
a. The nature of the evidence of CSE (ie presence of used condoms, alcohol, empty bottles of alcohol, evidence of drugs)
b. Whether the evidence indicated the CSE encompassed grooming and sexual activity.
For clarification, when I write the “specific names of locations or premises” I mean specific names of business premises/public buildings/parks and similar rather than simply a name of a town.
If I am mistaken and the information requested is already in the public domain, please direct me to where I can find it.
If it is not, and you feel you cannot provide all of this information, please provide what information you can in the spirit of Section 16 of FOI, to `provide advice and assistance, so far as it would be reasonable to expect the authority to do so, to persons who propose to make, or have made requests for information’.
Please send me the information by email. Please provide me with a summary of the information I have requested.
I look forward to hearing from you promptly, and at any rate, within the statutory time limit of 20 working days from your receipt of this email.
Whilst writing, I take this opportunity to remind you of the Information Commissioner’s public statements, in which he has stated that there is a “presumption of disclosure” under FOI.
Please note that if this request for FOI disclosure is refused, I reserve the right to take up the matter with the Information Commissioner and/or to pursue all legal avenues of appeal. I trust this will not be necessary.
Our data are not organised in such a way as to allow us to provide this information.
The thousands of records that would need interrogating are both paper and electronic records and would require a manual trawl through every record.
Please note that researching each individual case would exceed the appropriate limit (FOIA, s.12 (1)).
Therefore, the cost of compliance with your request is above the amount to which we are legally required to respond, i.e. the cost of locating and retrieving the information would exceed the appropriate costs limit under section 12 of the Freedom of information Act 2000. For West Midlands Police, the appropriate limit is set at £450, as prescribed by the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004, S.I. 3244.
A public authority which, in relation to any request for information, is relying on a claim that section 12 or section 14 applies must, within the time for complying with Section 1(1), give the applicant a notice stating that fact. In accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000, this letter acts as a refusal notice.
To enable us to proceed with your request I would be grateful if you could confirm whether you wish us to provide the information outlined above. After receiving your reply, your request will be considered and you will receive a response within the statutory timescale of 20 working days, as defined by the Act, subject to the application of any statutory exemptions. If you chose not to respond then your request will remain unanswered.
I am unable to suggest any practical way in which your request may be modified in order to satisfy your query or bring it within the 18 hours stipulated by the Regulations. I am however willing to consider any refinements that you are able to make to your request.